Play Fair for Parks: actions next week: rally and social media!

From Play Fair for Parks  Play Fair was Co-founded by New Yorkers for Parks, the New York City Council, the New York League of Conservation Voters, and DC 37, the NYC Parks workers’ union

Hi All,
Here’s how to advocate for this park and our GreenThumb MKGarden (and all GreenThumb gardens and Parks).
From Play Fair for Parks  Play Fair was Co-founded by New Yorkers for Parks, the New York City Council, the New York League of Conservation Voters, and DC 37, the NYC Parks workers’ union
How to help (From Play Fair):
We’re in the final budget stretch. Here’s how we need to be active:
2. Join us for another Play Fair Rally on Thursday, May 20, at 11am, ahead of the final Parks Committee Budget Hearing at 12pm:
Play Fair Rally – Parks Committee Budget Hearing
Thursday, May 20, 2021
Time: 11:00 AM – 11:45 AM
Location: Zoom
3. Sign up to testify Sign up to Testify:  final Executive Budget Hearing on Tuesday, May 25, at 10am – this will be the last opportunity to let your voice be heard this budget season. Sign up now to testify live or to submit written testimony
Here are some election advocacy updates.
NY4P asked top mayoral candidates to answer 5 key questions about parks: Here’s what they said:  including commitments to make park access more equitable and to dedicate 1% of the NYC budget to NYC Parks!
May 13: NY1 Mayoral Candidate debate
May 28: Voter registration deadline
June 12: Early voting begins
June 15: Absentee ballot request deadline
June 20: Early voting ends
June 22: Primary Election Day! Vote in person or mail in or drop off your absentee ballot
Here are the ASKS:

In 2021, we are calling on Mayor Bill de Blasio and the City Council to restore essential funds to the NYC Parks department. NYC Parks received the 2nd largest cut of any agency following COVID-19 austerity measures. That reduction of $84 million caused parks to be in the worst conditions on record while demand for them was at an all-time high.

Sign the Play Fair Now petition!

FY22 Budget Platform: $79.8M to Renew and Restore the Expense Budget for NYC Parks

$58M to reinvest in critical Maintenance and Operations

  • $10M to baseline the FY21 one-shot 100 City Park Worker and 50 Gardener staff lines
  • $30M to restore the seasonal staff budget for maintenance and operations workers citywide
  • $3M to restore the Parks Opportunity Program and provide a pathway to full-time employment
  • $15M to restore critical parks forestry contracts for tree pruning, stump removal, sidewalk repair, and invasive species control

$4M to reinvest in Recreation and Programming – to restore the Parks Equity Initiative and support park stewardship organizations citywide

$9M to reinvest in Parks Safety

  • $3M to restore the 50 Urban Park Ranger positions created in the FY20 budget
  • $6M to restore the 80 Parks Enforcement Patrol positions created in the FY20 budget

$7.9M to reinvest in Nature and Resiliency

  • $3.4M to restore 15 GreenThumb staff and expand access to plant materials, resources, and tools for community gardeners citywide
  • $4.5M to continue conserving and caring for our natural forests and begin critical improvements for our City’s wetlands and trails network

Volunteer Tomorrow (Monday May 10, 2021) with The Hort and NYC Parks!

The Horticultural Society of New York will be planting perennials in SDR Park tomorrow on Forsyth between Hester and Grand. 

Volunteers cleaned and mulched the planting beds last month and plan to green them tomorrow. 


DATE: Monday May 10

TIME: 10am and stay as long as you are able.

WHERE: corner of Hester and Forsyth 

CONTACT: Pamela Ito 917-886-1707

Our plant list is primarily for dry shade and includes: 

Hostas, hellebores, astilbe, red heuchera, forget me nots, echinacea, and other tuffys.  

We will be four Hort staff and a couple park volunteers. Will be there rain or shine. If you cant make it (understandably), please visit the plants and let me know how they are doing.


“Profiles in Leadership: Thomas Yu is right where he belongs”

From NeighborWorks America

Profile of Thomas Yu of Asian Americans for Equality

by Madelyn Lazorchak, Communications Writer

“Home is where we are anchored. It’s a starting place for many of us. It can be nurturing or it could be traumatic or a testing ground. It can be all of those things at the same time.”


“Home is something that shapes us.” Yu wants home to be as safe and stable as possible for as many people as possible. In last year’s NeighborWorks America Housing and Financial Capability Survey, 50% of Asians said their home did not feel safe or secure, while 44% of Blacks and 44% of Latinos shared the same sentiment.”

“Yu recalls living in neglected tenement housing as a child. “Immigrant families don’t always know where to go to create change,” he says. “Or where to go for help. But we had a neighbor who was an organizer, rallying tenants together to promote change and fight for building repairs.”

“One way Yu hopes to bolster the community is by bringing art and culture to Chinatown’s Forsyth Plaza, near the Manhattan Bridge. Chinatown has the lowest open-space ratio, per person, in the city. Yu says turning the plaza into a long-term arts and performance space will utilize an area that is empty after dark and bring economic activity at the same time. But it will also bring the community much-needed joy, starting with an art installation at the end of May.

We want to reclaim spaces to say, ‘We are not afraid.’ We are here, as a people.”

Ganesha in the M'Finda Kalunga Community Garden


“Lord Ganesha clears the obstacles and paves the way for us to move forward in life“


We hope for more international assistance for the people of India as the devastation of the COVID pandemic continues around the world. [aide finally shipped from The United Arab Emirates, Taiwan, France, Israel, U.S., Russia,

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World Migratory Bird Day May 8th 2021

May 8th, 2021 World Migratory Bird Day site here.

Artwork by Sara Wolman who grew up in Queens, New York

Global Event Map Here.

“During this year’s event, World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD) will imbue the activity of birdwatching, a past time enjoyed by some 86 million Americans, with deeper meaning. WMBD

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Work Day in SDR Park: Audubon NY, M'Finda Kalunga, Betty Hubbard & RivingtonHouse Plots AND Bird Sightings

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Photos above Lily Lasovick


Thanks to volunteers from Audubon NY. Removing garbage and

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The Horticultural Society, NYC Parks and Volunteers Plant/Clean Up in SDR Park's Hester/Grand Gardens


EARTH DAY 2021!!

Thank you to Pamela Ito of “The Hort” and NYC Parks Department‘s Johnathan Young and to Neighborhood Volunteers.

“Last Saturday we worked in SDR park from Grand – Hester along Forsyth. Hort Staff and local Volunteers weeded, fertilized (with kelp meal) planted and mulched.

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Haywood, one of Sara Roosevelt Park’s Gardeners (retired)

A step in the right direction… Protects children and all park users equitably, and the park workers and volunteers who help with upkeep.

From NYT article

“Paula Rogovin has a rule for teaching small children: Whenever you expose them to upsetting problems, remind them that

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Center for Urban Culture‘s introduction to Stretching New York City’s Capital Dollars

Key Findings

Reforms to New York’s capital process could save the city at least $800 million over five years, according to our analysis of estimated cost overruns tied to major problem areas plaguing the capital project design and construction process for public

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From NRC: Support Recycling and Zero Waste in the Biden Infrastructure Bill


Sign the petition here.

From “The National Recycling Coalition (NRC) and over 150 organizations and individuals in signing on to a letter initiated by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance and Zero Waste USA asking President Biden and Vice President Harris to establish policies and programs for waste reduction, reuse, recycling and composting that

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