In March of last year, we mentioned a new effort to bring a celebration of the neighborhood’s rich history to life. A n initial brainstorming session was initiated by two organizations, Fourth Arts Block and Downtown Art. This week, more than 30 organizations announced the first annual Lower East Side History Month.
According to a news release, the May festival will include “dozens of public events, exhibits, tours, and learning opportunities.” The month will be launched during a kickoff picnic at Pier 42, at Montgomery Street, on Sunday, May 4.
Chalk LES, an interactive project encouraging people to share memories and images of the Lower East Side on the neighborhood’s sidewalks will take place during the kickoff weekend. There will be an outdoor music-theater work based on 1914 newspaper stories and performed by teens from Downtown Art. Two groups, Good Old Lower East Side and the Museum of Reclaimed Urban Space will have presentations on the history of political activism on the LES. The Museum of Chinese in the Americas, the Lower East Side History Project, the Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy, and the Lower East Side Tenement Museum will offer special walking tours. Fourth Arts Block will debut a mural series based on the neighborhood’s living cultural heritage. And there will be weekly TV and livestream broadcasts from the LES Biography Project.
For more info, visit the LES History Month web site.