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Join Us as We Celebrate the 200th Anniversary of the Birth of Frederick Law Olmsted!

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April 26, 9:30 – 11:00am
Walking Tour: Celebrating an Often Overlooked Gem in Frederick Law Olmsted's NYC Design Legacy.

 

  1. Download slides for the tour.

 

Less well known than its larger NYC Olmsted park peers, Morningside Park was nevertheless considered by Samuel Parsons, Superintendent of Parks at the time of its completion, as "perhaps the most consummate piece of art that [Calvert Vaux] ever created."


That's certainly high praise for a work by this partner in perhaps the most revered landscape design team in US history - Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, who together designed New York City's Fort Greene Park, Central Park, Prospect Park, portions of Riverside Park and many parks across the United States.

 

Completed in 1895, the year of Calvert Vaux's death, this 30 acre park is the final Olmsted and Vaux design collaboration to be completed while they both lived.  It also remains arguably the most intact of all of Olmsted and Vaux's New York City designs.

In 2008 the park was named a Scenic Landmark of New York City.  It is one of only 11 such designations in the city. At the time, the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) noted that the park had deserved that coveted designation years earlier. The LPC designation report for Morningside Park is comprehensive and well worth reading.


This special tour of the park on the 200th anniversary of Frederick Law Olmsted's birth compares the original 1873 Olmsted and Vaux plan with their revised plan of 1887. The revisions highlight the challenges Olmsted and Vaux encountered, the changed urban conditions they had to contend with over the long years of planning and construction (1873-1895) and the brilliant execution of their final design.

Our tour is led by Brad Taylor, the President of the Friends of Morningside Park (FMP). Brad is an architect who has been an active member of FMP since 2000. We will meet at 9:30am at the northwest corner of West 110th Street (Cathedral Parkway) and Manhattan Avenue. The closest subway stop is the B/C stop at 110th Street and Central Park West.

To get a small taste of the tour you may want to take a look at this online tour we produced in 2020.

We look forward to welcoming you to Morningside Park!

Note: Proceeds from this special walking tour will benefit the National Association of Olmsted Parks. Tour attendance is limited. Your are encouraged to sign up now!

Photo Credit: J. Schumacher

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April 26, 11:00 – 11:30 am
Meet FLO and See Reclining Liberty

We will gather with local school children to meet FLO at the Reclining Liberty statue in Morningside Park. This temporary work by artist Zaq Landsberg is funded in part by the Friends of Morningside Park and has been a sensation over the past year. She was scheduled to be removed on April 22 but we are ever so grateful to our partners at NYC Parks and Zaq who have agreed to keep her in the park through the FLO birthday. Don't miss this last opportunity to see her before she leaves! A map of the approximate location of the statue is here.

We are thrilled that the FLO in the person of an FLO  "Big Head" will be joining us for this event. Not to be missed!

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