Juneteenth Celebration in the Garden

Juneteenth is the oldest known celebration of the ending of slavery. Dating back to 1865, it was on June 19th that the Union soldiers landed at Galveston, Texas with the news that the war had ended and that all enslaved people were now free. Juneteenth is a commemoration of African-American heritage, and a celebration of self-development and respect for all cultures.

This Saturday, June 22, the M’Finda Kalunga Community Garden will host its annual Juneteenth celebration. There will be readings, poetry, arts and crafts, and performances by a wonderful drumming and dance group from New York named Kalunga. This is from their website…

In the summer of 2011, master percussionists Javier Diaz (Disney’s Tarzan, ASO) and Madeiline Yayodele Nelson (Women of the Calabash) joined forces with some of the best artists in New York City to create a new group called KALUNGA. Their goal was to highlight not only amazing drumming and dancing, but to reveal the depth behind it.

KALUNGA is a new and unique experience based on ancient traditions.

KALUNGA artists hail from all over the world with influences from Africa and the African Diaspora, specifically Cuba, Peru, and Haiti.

KALUNGA performances provide audiences an experience that exalts the human spirit and celebrates all cultures.

KALUNGA promotes creativity, diversity, and respect for the earth.


Click on the link below to download the flyer for the event.



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Local Spokes Opportunity for Teens this Summer


Would you like to make a community art installation and explore neighborhood bike lanes?
Apply to be a part of a six week summer program for high school students.

Schedule: July 9 – August 15, 2013
Tuesdays & Thursdays 10am- 3pm
Deadline to Apply is JUNE 21

TO APPLY: Please submit application online to youth@localspokes.org For more information, please call Shelma Jun at Hester Street Collaborative: 212.431.6780 ext. 110

Click to download the flyer

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Summer Basketball at University Settlement

Attached are the 3 flyers (and quick details below) for our 3 new basketball program we’re launching this summer.

  • Saturdays 3-5PM basketball clinics for youth – $60 for 8 weeks
  • Saturdays 2-3PM basketball clinics just for girls age 7-12 – $60 for 8 weeks
  • Thursdays 8-10PM open basketball and games for young men (preferably 18 and above) –$8 per night
Click links below to download flyers.

B4YL Flyer- Boys
B4YL Flyer – Girls
Thursday Nights Under the Lights – Adult Basketball (English)

Alison M. Smith
Assistant Director, Community Partnerships
University Settlement at the Houston Street Center
273 Bowery
New York, NY 10002

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“Wolfbat Wave & Summer Jam”

Art & Skateboards with artist Dennis McNett –  in The Pit @ Sara D. Roosevelt Park

Saturday, June 22nd, 1pm – 6pm

A saturday afternoon of art, skateboards & songs on the Lower East Side.

Guest appearances by skateboarders Andrew Allen, Julien Stanger & Tony Trujillo

Kids 17 and under are invited to “trick out” blank skateboard decks through an art workshop led by Dennis McNett.

Attendees of all ages will be treated to live music and exhibitions.

Skatedecks and art supplies will be provided free of charge, while supplies last, to those participating in the workshop.

Young children must be accompanied by an adult. Capacity is limited, first come first serve.

  • 1pm-2pm art workshop participants arrive
  • 2pm-4pm art workshop led by Dennis McNett and fellow artists
  • 5pm-6pm musical performances by Tony & Trixie Trujillo and more


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It’s My Park Day

Poet Laureate and conservationist W.S. Merwin:

“On the last day of the world I would want to plant a tree…”

Thank you to all who helped us make IMPD this Spring wonderfully successful!

Sweeping, trash removal, planting, weeding, pruning, zumba-ing, drumming, bike-repairing, green map giving, petition signing, suggestions for park building-ing, eating (at MKGarden-ing), translating, oral history telling, tenant organizing, tree planting and neighboring…

We especially thank all the young people and their teachers who came to help out!!! Thanks also to Kirsty Bambridge and Indio Torres of Partnership for Parks and Parks for the prompt delivery of supplies for our 40 plus volunteers today.

Thanks to Zack of Times Up! for bike repair expertise, Olivier (and Green System map give aways!), Dylan House of Hester Street for the oral history collecting (Jim Pender and Bob are now history!) Gardeners (Diana, Bud, Kevin, Dick) and Farmer Ted and the CSA for feeding us!, University Settlement and the Chinatown Y for our Zumba teacher, our Drum circle (wonderful!) and tenants information. We had petition drives, etc etc.etc.!!

And of course Peter Gee and Jin Xiu and Kayan of AAFE and for being in the center of our lovely chaos!

We are so proud of our Park and all our volunteers.

Here are some photos taken by Kayan Chiu of Asian American’s for Equality (AAFE) of the Coalition’s activities during It’s My Park Day.

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Hester Street Collaborative Year of the Snake Lantern

Every year the Hester Street Collaborative works with 150 local middle school students at M.S. 131 to create a two month-long lantern installation in Sara D. Roosevelt Park in Chinatown. In the sixth year of this project, to celebrate the Year of the Snake, the students have constructed a 180 foot long snake along one of the walkways in the park.

Visit their Facebook page.


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