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News and Events
in Lower Manhattan
Volume 2, No. 40  May 6, 2015

Quote of the day: 
"I served a combat tour with the U.S. Army in Iraq and I can tell you without question that the helicopter noise in Battery Park City is significantly worse than it was in Baghdad."
     - Paul Rieckhoff, protesting the helicopter noise in Battery Park City, where he lives               

* Top NYC Economic Development Corp. exec leaves EDC for lobbyist job
* Downtown Post Portfolio: Jay Fine: A window on Lower Manhattan 
* Bits & Bytes: Former Pier 17 tenants sue Howard Hughes Corp.; Rajkumar launches re-election campaign
* Downtown Bulletin Board: Rent freeze workshop; Free Tai Chi classes; Spring planting
* Letter to the editor: Battery Park City helicopter noise
* Community Board 1 meeting: Week of May 4
* Calendar: Week of May 4
WEATHER INFORMATION: For current weather information, click here.

DONATIONS FOR NEPAL: More than 6,000 people are known to have died in the earthquake that struck Nepal on Saturday. The New York Times has published a list of organizations that are collecting money to help the victims. To see the list, click here.

DOWNTOWN POST NYC KUDO: Downtown Post NYC is honored to have been one of eight Manhattan publications to be included on Brick Underground's list of the "24 Best NYC Neighborhood Blogs." To see the article, click here.

BREAKING NEWS: At Community Board 1's Battery Park City Committee meeting on May 5, David Cheikin, senior vice president for leasing at Brookfield Office Properties, revealed that the Offshore Sailing School owned by Doris and Steve Colgate had been chosen to run sailing lessons at North Cove Marina. However, this summer's schedule will be much truncated at best. Moreover, there is still no signed contract between Brookfield and the Battery Park City Authority, which controls the marina. Offshore Sailing proposes to start sailing lessons on June 11 with seven boats, however, when asked whether that date and others he mentioned in his presentation might fall through because of the contractual difficulties, Cheikin replied, "Anything is possible."

Go to for updates on breaking news.

All ads in Downtown Post NYC have clickable links. Click on an ad for more information.

Apple tree blooming in Tribeca's Finn Square at the intersection of Varick Street and West Broadway. May 2, 2015.  (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer) 


Julie Greenberg, senior vice president with Kasirer Consulting, and Christopher Curry, senior executive vice president of The Howard Hughes Corp., with City Councilmember Margaret Chin on March 20, 2013 following City Council's passage of the ULURP (Uniform Land Use Review Procedure) that gave Howard Hughes the right to redevelop Pier 17 in the South Street Seaport and to rezone portions of the surrounding area.
(Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)
Ashley Dennis, chief of staff for New York City Economic Development Corporation President Kyle Kimball, has found a new job. According to Save Our Seaport, a grassroots organization that has been working to preserve the historic South Street Seaport and its maritime history, Dennis has resigned from EDC to take a job with Kasirer Consulting, a lobbying firm that, since 2009, has received more than $1 million in fees from the Howard Hughes Corporation (HHC).

Kasirer Consulting is one of the largest lobbying firms in the city. Julie Greenberg, senior vice president at Kasirer Consulting, has been frequently at the side of Christopher Curry, senior executive vice president of The Howard Hughes Corporation, as he has negotiated the land use deals that have opened the way for HHC to take over more and more of the Seaport.

Dennis, 27, led the now disbanded Seaport Working Group, a task force composed of elected officials, Community Board 1 members, Seaport residents and businesses, representatives of the New York City Economic Development Corporation (landlord for much of the Seaport) and The Howard Hughes Corporation. It was charged with creating non-binding goals and principles for South Street Seaport development.

Dennis, along with her boss, Kyle Kimball who announced his resignation effective next month for an undisclosed opportunity, and Patrick O'Sullivan, former VP of Real Estate for NYCEDC who left in September 2014 to join the land-use practice of Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP, was responsible for negotiating the revised Marketplace Lease that gave HHC the keys to "privatize" the historic South Street Seaport District.

Michael Kramer, a member of the Seaport Working Group task force and of Save Our Seaport, called Dennis' move to Kasirer Consulting "troubling."


Save Our Seaport cites New York City Conflict of Interest Board regulations that state, "As a City employee, you may often deal with companies in the private sector. If you are thinking about leaving City service, you may want to contact some of the firms you deal with to talk about the possibility of going to work for them. But stop! This kind of networking is prohibited. Similarly, a private firm with which you have some official business dealings may let you know about a job opening in that firm for someone with your City experience. Exploring these possibilities, a common practice in the private sector, could present a conflict of interest for a City employee. To any outside observer, trying to get a job with a company that you're dealing with in your City capacity can raise serious questions about your integrity."
Save Our Seaport spokesperson Diane Harris Brown remarked, "The Seaport Working Group was supposed to represent all stakeholders. We were quite vocal at the time regarding its exclusion of the South Street Seaport Museum and the New Amsterdam Market. Now we see how that could have happened! It is time for a new governing authority, with local stakeholders to replace the involvement of NYCEDC in the Brooklyn Bridge Southeast Urban Renewal Plan District. We need a Master Plan for the Seaport."

Dennis is the step-daughter of former New York State Governor David Paterson.

Downtown Post Portfolio

Harbor ice. (Photo © Jay Fine)
About Downtown Post Portfolio: This is the first installment of what will be a regular feature in Downtown Post NYC, showcasing artists and photographers who live and/or work south of Canal Street or who create images (paintings, drawings, photographs) of Lower Manhattan.

To have your work considered for publication in Downtown Post Portfolio, send up to seven high-resolution jpeg files attached to an email to (One of the photos should be a picture of you.) Several of these photos will be published in Downtown Post NYC, along with a short artist bio and a statement about the work submitted, including whether or not it is for sale and how to purchase it.

Not all entries can be published. Copyright remains with the artist. Before publication, each contributor will be asked to sign a release stating that Downtown Post NYC has the right to publish the work in the emailed newsletter and in the Downtown Post archives, and that there is no payment.

About Jay Fine: Jay Fine is a New York City fine-art photographer and photojournalist, based in
Jay Fine. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)
Lower Manhattan. His work has appeared in publications and on television worldwide including National Geographic, Popular Photography, New York Daily News and on NBC News and the BBC.

In 2003, after moving to Battery Park City he began an ongoing project to document his surroundings, focusing on New York Harbor as well as the architecture and people of Lower Manhattan.   
From a vantage point 40 stories above the city, he found drama and news by looking out his window. He recorded everything from dramatic electrical storms to the errant use of Air Force One flying around the Statue of Liberty.

One of his exhibits, "The Edge of Manhattan (2012-2013)," was a project for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's Arts for Transit program. The exhibit consisted of seven large lightboxes of his work in the Bowling Green subway station.

Skateboard park. (Photo © Jay Fine)
Since 2011 he has had one-man shows at the New York Mercantile Exchange and at the Kim Foster Gallery in Chelsea. Fine regularly posts new work on Facebook and on his Flickr site.

Through May 10, he has a show called "New York Stories" at the Adorama Gallery, 42 W. 18th St. (For more information about the show, click here. Adorama is closed on Friday afternoons and on Saturdays.)

His work is also on exhibit at the World Trade Gallery at 120 Broadway (entrance on Cedar Street across from the big Red Cube.)    
Fine is represented by the Kim Foster Gallery in New York (for his fine-art prints) and by the Caters News Agency in the UK for his photojournalism.

To see some more of Fine's work on the Downtown Post NYC website, click here.

Lightning striking the Statue of Liberty. (Photo © Jay Fine)

Bits & Bytes

Santiago Calatrava's Oculus at the World Trade Center will open to limited pedestrian traffic in June. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

"Former Pier 17 tenants sue Howard Hughes over allegedly fake membership dues," The Real Deal, 5/5/15. "A group of former tenants at the South Street Seaport's Pier 17 is suing General Growth Properties and the Howard Hughes Corp., claiming the landlords intentionally squeezed the retail shops dry so they could throw them overboard in an attempt to redevelop the pier," says The Real Deal. "About a dozen businesses, including the pier's Nathan's Famous hot dog restaurant and the Simply Seafood eatery, filed a lawsuit in New York State Supreme Court late last week alleging that GGP and Howard Hughes collected member dues for a defunct merchants association for 15 years, then took the businesses to court when they stopped making payments.
According to the lawsuit, pier operator the Rouse Company, which GGP acquired in 2004, established a merchant association for the pier in 1986 and collected dues that were to go toward advertising, promotions and special events meant to enhance business at the pier. But when the association expired in 1998, Rouse continued to collect dues, the suit claims. The plaintiffs claimed the landlords even went so far as to hold phony officers elections and have the tenants endorse checks ostensibly paying for the association's programs." For the complete article, click here.

Rajkumar launches re-election bid: Jenifer Rajkumar, Democratic District Leader for the 65th Assembly District, Part C, launched her bid for reelection at a rally on the steps of City Hall on May 3. U.S. Congressman Jerrold Nadler, U.S. Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney and New York
On May 3, Jenifer Rajkumar launched her bid to be re-elected District Leader for the 65th AD, Part C, on the steps of City Hall. She was endorsed by U.S. Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney (at the lecturn), by U.S. Congressman Jerrold Nader and by New York City Public Advocate Letitia James.
(Photo: Courtesy of Jenifer Rajkumar)
City Public Advocate Letitia James were among the elected officials and Lower Manhattan community leaders who attended the rally.

Maloney praised Rajkumar as "an outstanding leader for her constituency," citing her work to end the contemporary slave trade of human trafficking that has resulted in "the strongest state anti-trafficking legislation in the country." In Battery Park City, said Maloney, Rajkumar has fought "to preserve usable open space in the community and to save the North Cove Marina" and "has built a permanent grassroots network to continue voicing the community's priorities and concerns to the Battery Park City Authority." She also said that Rajkumar had helped to persuade the MTA to restore the M9 bus route linking the Lower East Side to Battery Park City. "Now that's a big thing," Maloney said. "That wasn't easy to change."

Congressman Nadler said that Rajkumar had "demonstrated time and again her ability and her interest and her willingness and her energy in building diverse coalitions to tackle community problems and to lead."

Letitia James said that Rajkumar had worked with the office of Public Advocate on a wide variety of issues. "When we focused on the state of our public health system, we reached out to Jenifer," James said. "She was a part of our effort when we sponsored town halls all across the City of New York on mayoral control of our public school system."

Rajkumar was also endorsed by Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer and by Manhattan County Leader Keith Wright.

The emcee for the event was Gen. Sidney Baumgarten, a long-time Battery Park City resident. Baumgarten told the crowd, "Jenifer not only supported the Battery Park City CERT [Community Emergency Response Team], she took the courses and became a member of the CERT." He mentioned that Rajkumar is a graduate of Stanford University Law School and "is working for a law firm where she does a lot of civil rights work. She is a very powerful spokesperson for the underprivileged and the disadvantaged in New York."

Steven Wong, President of the Hotel Chinese Workers Association, also spoke, praising Rajkumar's work helping workers in Chinatown. "She is a strong lady, and she knows the issues," said Wong, pointing out how Rajkumar has used her background as a civil rights lawyer to help Chinese hotel workers fighting wage discrimination.

The district that Rajkumar represents includes Battery Park City below Vesey Street, the Financial District, part of the Lower East Side, and part of SoHo.

District Leaders are unpaid. They are elected every two years during the primary election in September by voters registered to the party that the New York State Assembly member for that district represents. The 65th Assembly District is represented by Sheldon Silver.

New York City Mayor Ed Koch, Congressman Nadler and New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer were once district leaders as was former City Councilmember Kathryn Freed - now a justice on the New York Supreme Court - who was once district leader for the 65th AD, Part C, which Rajkumar represents. - Terese Loeb Kreuzer

"As Oculus at World Trade Center Opens, So Does a Neighborhood," New York Times, 5/6/15. "Santiago Calatrava's Oculus, that unearthly winged structure taking form at the World Trade Center, will open to limited pedestrian traffic in June," says The New York Times. "This will give the public its first glimpse of a majestic and luminous space - framed by soaring, softly curving white ribs and the ribbons of light between them - that looks like nothing so much as the nave of a cathedral by Gaudí. Or like a turkey skeleton after it's been stripped clean at Thanksgiving. The debate over the $3.9 billion World Trade Center Transportation Hub, of which the Oculus is the aesthetic and retail centerpiece, is only beginning. Love it or hate it, however, there is no denying its magnitude." For the complete article, click here.

Downtown bulletin board

The Battery Park City Parks Conservancy sponsors Drop-in Chess for children and teens (ages 5 to 15) on Wednesdays from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. in Rockefeller Park. Players of all abilities are welcome. For more information, click here.
(Photo: Courtesy of Battery Park City Parks Conservancy)

Senior and Disability rent freeze workshop: Seniors who are at least 62 years old and have a total annual income of $50,000 or less may be eligible for a rent freeze if they live in a rent-controlled, rent-stabilized or Mitchell-Lama apartment. On May 6 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., a workshop will explain SCRIE (Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption) and DRIE (Disability Rent Increase Exemption) and how to sign up. The workshop is being sponsored by New York State Assemblymember Deborah Glick, New York State Sen. Brad Hoylman and the Westbeth Artists Residents Council along with U.S. Congressman Jerrold Nadler, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, City Councilmember Corey Johnson and Community Board 2. Place: Westbeth Community Room, 55 Bethune St. (between West and Washington Streets). For more information, call (212) 674-5153.

Free Tai Chi classes:
Warrior Bridge, which opened in January in the South Street Seaport to teach martial arts, meditation and yoga, is offering free Tai Chi classes in the Peck Slip Plaza on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 8:15 a.m. to 9 a.m. The Warrior Bridge studio is at 275 Water St. For more information about Warrior Bridge, click here. In Battery Park City, free Tai Chi classes take place on Friday mornings from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. on Esplanade Plaza, just south of North Cove Marina. Alex Hing, the instructor, also teaches at the China Institute and at Sacred Sounds of Yoga. No experience is necessary for the Tai Chi classes and all levels are welcome. The classes are under the auspices of the Battery Park City Parks Conservancy and run through Oct. 31 except on May 23, July 4, Aug. 29 and Oct. 31. For more information, click here.

Spring planting at DeLury Square Park: Join the Friends of DeLury Park on May 16 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. for Spring Planting Day, a citywide event sponsored by the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation. All tools and planting materials are provided. DeLury Square Park is at the corner of Fulton and Gold Streets, next to Southbridge Towers. Rain date is Sunday, May 17. For more information, click here.

Financial District Lions Club raises money for Nepal relief effort
: Terry Paladini-Baumgarten,
president and founder of the New York Financial District Lions Club, vividly remembers what happened in Lower Manhattan on 9/11. Helplessly, she watched victims of the terrorist attack jump from the burning towers. "We are grateful for our lives, but all this motivated me to do something for others in need," she wrote in the aftermath of the attack. That's why she founded the Financial District Lions Club, part of an organization started in 1917 whose mission is to "empower volunteers to serve in their communities, meet humanitarian needs, encourage peace and promote international understanding." From funds collected around the world, Lions Clubs International has already sent $1 million to help the victims of the Nepal earthquake. The Financial District Lions Club is helping in this effort by collecting donations to aid the victims. Funds collected will be sent to the Lions Clubs International for distribution to where the money is most needed, with 100 percent of funds contributed going to the Nepalese. To donate through Pay Pal, click here. To donate through the FiDi Lions Club website, click here.

Liberty Street bridge to close: On May 11 at 6 a.m., the Liberty Street bridge will be closed to pedestrian traffic in order to remove the temporary bridge extension from the Route 9A median to the sidewalk in front of 90 West St. Pedestrian and handicap access to the Battery Park City/World Financial Center will be available via the north and south crosswalks at Albany Street and the north crosswalk at Liberty Street. The Liberty Street bridge will remain closed until its eastern connection to the World Trade Center complex is complete.

Focus groups and Town Hall meetings on aging: On June 3, the New York Academy of Medicine will be conducting a focus group on aging at the Battery Park City library, 175 North End Ave., from 10 a.m. to noon. The NYAM is looking for a maximum of 12 people aged 55 or older, to participate. Each participant will be paid $20. All information will be kept confidential. To sign up, call Anushka Gopilall at (212) 822-7237 or email


In addition to this focus group, City Councilmember Margaret Chin, who chairs City Council's Committee on Aging, hosted a town hall meeting on May 1 and is hosting one on June 5 to discuss issues affecting the elderly. The May 1 town hall was co-sponsored by Community Boards 1, 2 and 3 and took place at the City Hall Senior Center, 100 Gold St.


The June 5 town hall will be held at the Educational Alliance, 197 E. Broadway from 10 a.m. to noon. To attend, send an email to Xiaomin Zhao at    


Beach volleyball at Pier 25:
Kids in grades 6 through 12 can sign up for Beach Volleyball instruction and games at Pier 25 in Hudson River Park. The League runs from May 15 to July 17 on Friday evenings from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. The program is free for Downtown Community Center members. The fee for non-members is $25. Sponsorships are needed. Email to become a sponsor. To register, click here.

Battery Park City Parks Conservancy summer programming: The Battery Park City Parks Conservancy organizes free art, gardening, science, yoga, tai chi and sports programs that run from early May through late October in BPC's parks. The programs are for children as young as three years old to adults. Some are drop-in programs. Others require advance registration. For more information, click here.

Malaysian Kitchen grand opening:
The newest restaurant to open in Battery Park City,
Fluffy bread served with a curried potato dipping sauce.  
Malaysian Kitchen at 21 South End Ave., overlooking South Cove, held its grand opening on April 18. Malaysian cuisine reflects the historical influences of the English, the Portuguese and the Dutch, and the country's present connection to its Southeast Asian neighbors. Malaysian Kitchen is open daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. It will deliver. The phone number is (212) 786-1888. For more information about Malaysian Kitchen, click here.

Downtown Little League opening day photo gallery: The Downtown Little League kicked off its 2015 season on April 18. This year, there are just under 1,100 players on 81 teams. For photos of the opening day, click here.

Whitney Museum of American Art photo gallery: The Whitney Museum of American Art at 99 Gansevoort St. opened to the public on May 1. For photographs of the Whitney Museum's new building and of its opening exhibition, click here.

South Street Seaport Museum Opening Day: The South Street Seaport Museum opened its 2015 season on April 25 with events on Pier 16 and activities for kids and their families in the lobby of the museum's 12 Fulton St. building. For photographs of the museum's opening day, click here.


Letter to the editor

Helicopter flying near Lower Manhattan and Governors Island.
(Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

To the editor:
Today, as our family attempted to enjoy a gorgeous spring day in Battery Park City, dozens of absurdly raucous tourist helicopters loudly buzzed past our building (and the entire neighborhood) at low altitude, non-stop. One after the other, hour after hour, they flew by at close to 30-second intervals. At one point, I counted five different aircraft overhead at the same time. This is completely unacceptable.

Helicopter noise is a major quality of life issue that the Battery Park City Authority should work hard to remedy as soon as possible. It's about noise pollution, the environmental impact and a legitimate security concern given our proximity to Ground Zero.

I served a combat tour with the U.S. Army in Iraq and I can tell you without question that the helicopter noise in Battery Park City is significantly worse than it was in Baghdad. And as a combat veteran and 9/11 first responder, I find it especially troubling that the overall welfare of our community is being compromised so a few tourism companies can make a buck.

I stand with the leaders from Stop The Chop NYNJ and over two dozen elected officials in calling on the Mayor to stop this madness and stand with the families of our community. The Battery Park City Authority must, too. As leaders for our community, it is its duty to push relentlessly on this issue in defense of our families as quickly and as aggressively as possible.

Paul Rieckhoff

From the editor:
We welcome letters to the editor. We reserve the right to edit them for clarity and length. Email them to


Susan Wu, a junior at Stuyvesant High School, and Ruth Ohman at CB1's Battery Park City Committee meeting on May 5. Wu is one of seven new members of Community Board 1. This is the first year in which teenagers have been eligible to serve on community boards. Ohman is a public member of the community board after many years of service as a full-fledged member. She has been particularly active in advocating for the elderly. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer) 
All meetings take place at the Community Board 1 office, 49-51 Chambers St., Room 709, starting at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted. The public is welcome to attend. Bring photo ID to enter the building.
May 6: Financial District Committee
* 28 Liberty St. (formerly One Chase Manhattan Plaza) - Presentation by Frank E. Mahan, AIA, Associate Director, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, LLP
* Governors Island - President, The Trust for Governors Island
* 8-12 Maiden Lane Hotel Project - Update by Alex Lu, Esq., Counsel, W & L Group Construction, Inc.
* MCNY New Financial District Campus Coming in 2016 - Presentation by Vinton Thompson, President and Beth Dunphe, Chief Development Officer, MCNY
* American Heart Association Walk/Run, Thursday, May 28, 2015 - Discussion
* 180 Maiden Lane, application for liquor license for Maiden Lane Hospitality Group, LLC, d/b/a MLHG - Resolution
* Street activity permit for Downtown Friends of Visiting Nurses Liberty Street Festival on Sunday, July 18, 2015 12 p.m.-7 p.m. on Liberty Street between Broadway and Trinity Place - Resolution
* 75 Wall St., application for liquor license for KTG Hospitality LLC, d/b/a Wall Street Grill - Resolution
* 200 Broadway, application for wine and beer license for Shake Shack Fulton Center LLC - Resolution
* 11 John St., application for liquor license for WeWork Fulton Center LLC - Resolution
* 110 Wall St., application for liquor license for WW Service LLC - Resolution
* 110 Wall St., application for liquor license for The Mailroom LLC - Resolution
* 85 Broad St., application for liquor license for WeWork Social Club LLC - Resolution
* 109 Washington St., application for a liquor license for 109 Washington Restaurant LLC - Resolution
* Governors Island, application for a liquor license for Governors Garden LLC - Resolution
* 24-26 John St., application for a liquor license for The Artezen Hotel LLC - Resolution
* 24-26 John St., application for a liquor license for The Studio Lounge at The Artezen Hotel - Resolution

The following notices have been received for renewal, upgrade, or transfer of wine and beer or liquor licenses or sidewalk cafe permits:
* 233 Broadway, renewal application for liquor license for W LLC, d/b/a Woolworth Tower Kitchen
* 70 South St., renewal application for liquor license for Industry Kitchen
* 170 John St., renewal application for liquor license for Trading Post
* 103 Washington St., renewal application for liquor license for Hamiltonian Corp. d/b/a Suspenders
* 250 Greenwich St., 40th floor, aka 7 WTC, renewal application for liquor license for The New York Academy of Sciences
* 26 Vesey St., renewal application for beer license for Vesdel Foods INC, d/b/a Stage Door Deli
* 127 John St., renewal application for beer license for LGRC Corp, d/b/a Plaza Deli
* 150 William St., renewal application for wine & beer license for 150 Market Inc.
* Whitehall Ferry Terminal, renewal application for beer license for Balin Corp, d/b/a Lens Papaya
* Peter Minuit Plaza, renewal application for wine and beer license for Jeans Café Corp, New York Film Academy Café

CALENDAR: Week of May 4

A display in the lobby of the South Street Seaport Museum at 12 Fulton St. recalls the barrels and hand trucks and cargo that clattered through the Seaport's streets in the 19th century. The lobby is open Fridays to Sundays, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
(Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

May 6: At the Museum of Jewish Heritage, hear this year's best emerging Jewish writers, winners of the Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature, as they discuss the contemporary Jewish experience and how their Jewish identity inspires their work. Place: 36 Battery Place. Time: 7 p.m. Free (donations welcome). For more information and to reserve tickets, click here.

May 7
: On Jan. 31, 1865, slavery was officially abolished in the United States. Trinity Wall Street is commemorating this anniversary with four days of African-American music including anonymous spirituals and the work of some celebrated black composers. Composer Portrait: Mary Lou Williams. The Chris Pattishall Quintet plays Williams' "Zodiac Suite" (arr. Pattishall). Place: Trinity Church, Broadway at Wall Street. Time: 1 p.m.

May 8: The second day of Trinity Wall Street's Black Music Festival brings "Spirituals: Dett through Dawson and Hogan through Thurston." The Choir of Trinity Wall Street performs spirituals (By and by; Deep River, Go down, Moses; Nobody knows the trouble I see; Steal away) with Stanley Thurston, guest conductor. Place: Trinity Church, Broadway at Wall Street. Time: 7 p.m.

May 8: Tribeca Performing Arts Center presents Grammy-nominated Ruthie Foster and her blend of soul, blues, rock, folk and gospel. Her many accolades include three "Best Female Vocalist" awards from the Austin Music Awards, two Grammy nominations for Best Contemporary Blues Album and a Living Blues Music Award Critic's Poll for "Female Blues Artist of the Year." Place: 199 Chambers St. Time: 8 p.m. Tickets: $45; $35. For more information, call (212) 220-1460 or click here for a video clip of Foster and to buy tickets.

May 8: This will be the 14th year that the Sunset Singing Circle has been held on Friday evenings in Battery Park City, led by singer/guitarist Terre Roche. As the sun sets over the Hudson River, novice and experienced singers sit on the lawn and sing folk songs (with words provided in the Sunset Singing Circle Songbook). Players of acoustic instruments are encouraged to add their skills to the mix. Place: Wagner Park. Time: 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Free. For more information, click here.

May 9: The third day of Trinity Wall Street's Black Music Festival features Composer Portrait: Trevor Weston. The Choir of Trinity Wall Street conducted by Julian Wachner performs Trevor Weston's Truth tones; O Daedalus, fly away home; The gentlest thing; My heart hath trusted in God; Visions of glory; Given sound; Rivers of living water; Ashes; Messe Ancienne; Maa'at musings. Place: Trinity Church, Broadway at Wall Street. Time: 7 p.m.

The concert will be followed by a Reggae Dance Party: Bob Marley's Soulful Celebration. Place: St. Paul's Chapel, Broadway at Fulton Street. Time: 9 p.m.

May 9: Poetry Time with Charles Waters. Charles Waters brings a morning of humorous poetry to Poets House in Battery Park City. He and his audience will write comical poems together and act them out on stage. Charles Waters is a children's poet, actor and educator who has performed in schools and universities across the country. His work has appeared in various textbooks and anthologies including National Geographic. Place: 10 River Terrace. Time: 11 a.m. Tickets: $5; children under 4, free. For more information, click here.

May 9: Hudson Eats at Brookfield Place presents a variety showcase of live music, games, story time, magic, puppetry and more followed by a movie for the whole family. Time: Shows at 11 a.m. and noon. Movies at 1 p.m. Free. For more information, click here.

May 9: A free, community dance for all ages brings Cuban music to Battery Park City. Pepito Gomez performs music that encompasses the history of his native Cuba, from the son and rumba of the Buena Vista Social Club era, to the modern sounds of timba, a very danceable, post-salsa, high-energy style. For 20 years he has been astonishing worldwide audiences, with his strong, beautiful tenor voice. Fuákata Cuban Salsa NY will both perform for, and instruct, attendees so there should be no worries about knowing the steps. They will perform salsa and Rueda de Casino, a visually spectacular dance combination which involves the constant movement of partners. After their performance everyone will be invited to get up and dance! Place: Esplanade Plaza (just south of North Cove Marina). Time: 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Free. For more information, click here.

May 10: The final day of Trinity Wall Street's Black Music Festival starts with Choral Eucharist. Duke Ellington's Sacred Service will be performed by the Choir of Trinity Wall Street, Julian Wachner, conductor, at the 11:15 worship service. At 2 p.m., the festival finale will feature Circlesongs with Bobby McFerrin and the Choirs of Trinity Wall Street. Place: Trinity Church at Broadway and Wall Street.  

Through May 23: Poets House in Battery Park City presents Edward Sanders' "Seeking the Glyph." During the course of a long and diverse career as a poet, musician, historian, publisher, activist and pacifist, Sanders has invented a glyphic alphabet - a colorful script of hand-drawn characters, symbols, and graphemes. He says that, "A glyph is a drawing that is charged with literary, emotional, historical or mythic, and poetic intensity." This exhibition shows selected drawings and daybooks authored by Sanders between 1962 and the present. Place: 10 River Terrace. Time: Tues.-Fri., 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sat., 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Free. For more information, click here.

Ongoing: "Cerámica de los Ancestros: Central America's Past Revealed" displays 155 ancient objects from the National Museum of the American Indian's rarely seen collections of Central American ceramics. The exhibition examines seven regions representing distinct Central American cultural areas that are today part of Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama, where Central America's first inhabitants lived. Dating back to 1000 B.C., the ceramics help tell the story of the innumerable achievements of these ancient civilizations, each with unique, sophisticated ways of life, value systems and arts. Through January 2017. Place: 1 Bowling Green. The National Museum of the American Indian is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and on Thursdays, until 8 p.m. Free. For more information, click here.  

Ongoing: The Museum of Jewish Heritage presents "Designing Home: Jews and Midcentury Modernism," an exhibition that explores the cultural context in which many Jewish émigré architects and designers created a distinctly modern American design that still has wide appeal today.  Walk-up tours will be offered on Sundays in May (except May 24) at 12 p.m. with no reservations necessary. Through January 2016. Place: 36 Battery Place. For more information, click here.

Ongoing: The Skyscraper Museum's new exhibition, "Ten Tops," surveys all buildings in the world today, completed or under construction, that are 100 stories and taller. Of these 24 towers, the exhibition focuses on 10 (plus a few more), zooming in on their uppermost floors to see how they were designed and constructed. Through September 2015. Place: 39 Battery Place. Hours: Noon to 6 p.m., Wednesdays to Sundays. Admission: $5; $2.50 (students and seniors). For more information, click here.

Ongoing: The Woolworth Building was designed by Cass Gilbert to house the offices of the F. W. Woolworth Company and was the tallest building in the world from 1913 until 1930. With its ornamental gothic-style exterior, it dominated the New York City skyline and served as an icon of American ingenuity with state of the art steel construction, fireproofing and high-speed elevators and it was dubbed "the Cathedral of Commerce." The building is still privately owned and operated, and has long been closed to the public. Tours of its magnificent landmarked lobby featuring marble, mosaics, and murals have only recently been made available and can be taken for 30-minutes, 60-minutes or 90-minutes. Custom and Private tours for groups of 10 - 35 can also be arranged. Place: 233 Broadway. Various times. Tickets: $20, $30 and $45, depending on the length of the tour. For more information and to buy tickets, click here.

Ongoing: "Glittering World: Navajo Jewelry of the Yazzie Family" opened on Nov. 14 and continues through Jan. 10, 2016. The exhibit includes more than 300 examples of beautifully crafted jewelery, most of it made by the Yazzie family, with some from the National Museum of the American Indian's collection. Through a video, photographs and a handsome catalog, the exhibit shows how the jewelry expresses Navajo cultural values and way of life inspired by a majestic landscape of buttes, mesas and desert. The museum is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily and on Thursdays until 8 p.m.; closed December 25. Admission is free. 


Ongoing: "A Town Known as Auschwitz" is an exhibit of photographs at the Museum of Jewish Heritage tracing the history of a town called "Oswiecim" in what is now Poland, where Jews and non-Jews lived side by side for centuries. When German forces occupied the town in September 1939, they renamed it "Auschwitz" and established a concentration and death camp there. More than 1 million people died at Auschwitz, including 90 percent of the town's Jews. The museum is at 36 Battery Place. For information the exhibit, click here. For information on the museum's hours and admission fees, click here.

Ongoing: "Defining Lines: Maps from the 1700s and early 1800s" at the Fraunces Tavern
Museum. Twenty-seven maps provide a perspective on the evolving nation's place in history. A map from 1804, never before exhibited, shows the U.S. postal routes. Place: 54 Pearl St. Time: Noon to 5 p.m., daily. Admission fees: $7; $4 (seniors, students with ID, children, 6 to 8 years old. Children, 5 and under, free. Active military with ID, free. For more information, click here.
Ongoing: The National Museum of the American Indian is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., with free admission. It offers free films, docent-led tours of its exhibitions and tours of its premises, the Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House, designed by Cass Gilbert. The building, which was completed in 1907, is a National Historic Landmark and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. One Bowling Green. Phone: (212) 514-3700. For the museum's calendar, click here.

Ongoing: The lobby of the South Street Seaport Museum at 12 Fulton St. on Schermerhorn Row is open three days a week with interpretive displays and activities. Access to the museum's upstairs galleries is by appointment or for education programs only. For private tours of Schermerhorn Row and its old hotels, email Lobby access: Fridays to Sundays, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Buy tickets now: On June 8 at 6 p.m., Poets House will once again embark on a poetic pilgrimage across the Brooklyn Bridge, stopping along the way to listen to NYC-inspired poetry and ending on the Brooklyn side of the bridge with dinner, wine and more poetry. This is the 20th anniversary of the fundraising event. All proceeds help make possible the hundreds of free and affordable public programs that Poets House presents each year. Tickets start at $250; ($225 for Poets House members). Reservations are required. To buy tickets online, click here. For details or to make reservations, contact Krista Manrique at (212) 431-7920, ext. 2830 or email

Reserve now: "Safeguarding Historic Places in Times of Armed Conflict" is the subject on
May 15 when Lisa Ackerman, art historian, Executive Vice President of the World Monuments Fund and a Battery Park City neighbor, shares her insights into the important work of preserving historic world art in times of armed conflict. Place: 21 West Thames St. Community Room. Time: 10:30 a.m. Free. To reserve a seat, call (212) 912-0678 or email Ruth Ohman at 

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Editor: Terese Loeb Kreuzer

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