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Common Ground Festival 2021 celebrates the 40th anniversary of Friends of Morningside Park!

Updated: Sep 25, 2021




THE ANNUAL COMMON GROUND FESTIVAL RETURNS TO THE PARK WITH A NEW PROGRAMMING PARTNER!

We are thrilled to be celebrating our 40th Anniversary this year and what better way to do it than with free programming that lifts up the rich diversity of our park community. We have partnered with @NYCParks for all these decades but this year for the first time we are thrilled that they are joining us as a programming partner for our annual Common Ground festival. Our sincere thanks to Historic Harlem Parks Administrator Jana LaSorte for her creative energy and vision in making this happen. We look forward to many more programming collaborations moving forward.

Speaking of Partnerships ...this is the tenth year of our collaboration with the Arts Initiative and Miller Theatre at Columbia University who produce the amazing annual Morningside Lights workshops and lantern procession. While protocols related to the ongoing pandemic mean that there will not be a procession this year, lantern making kits have been distributed and we will have a nano lantern making table set up on Saturday at 120th Street just north of Reclining Liberty. Stop by and make a nano lantern. We will light our lanterns as darkness descends. Please share photos and video of your illuminated lanterns on Morningside-Lights.com.


Here's the rundown of the festivities. We can't wait to share them with you! Scroll down to the map for venue locations.

  • ALL DAY view Faces Of Harlem photo exhibition – 112-116th Streets along the park fence on Morningside Ave.

  • 10AM Walking Meditation with Harlem Insight Beginners and all levels invited to meet at the lawn at 114th Street

  • 12PM Marching Cobras: Harlem’s Favorite Marching Band Celebrates Morningside Park! The band will start just inside the park at 123rd Street and Morningside Ave. and proceeds south to the lawn in front of the pond at 113-114 Street.

  • 12:30PM Nigel Dunkley Ventriloquist/Comedian at The Pond

  • 1PM Double Dutch Dreamz Demo & workshop on the basketball court at 113th Street

  • 2PM Lacina Coulibaly Contemporary West African Dance & Performance Art at the 112th street ball field

  • 3PM Lacina Coulibaly Conversation & workshop at the 113th Street picnic area around the fundamental principles surrounding & shaping the dance of Africa

  • 4PM Music with iamchelseaiam at the Grand Staircase Plaza (below Morningside Drive at 116th Street)

  • 4PM Acknowledgment of the National Day of Remembrance for Homicide Victims. Bring red rose petals to the Reclining Liberty statue at 120th Street and Morningside Avenue.

  • 4PM Brian Hills & the PAL Acting Troop "Respond" at Reclining Liberty

  • 4:30PM PitSiRa YaMabala the soulful sounds of South Africa featuring bass and cello at Reclining Liberty

  • 5PM Antoine Roney Jazz at Reclining Liberty

  • 6PM Motema Recording Artist Amy London & Friends with jazz at the Grand Staircase Plaza

  • 7PM Lantern illumination to celebrate the tenth annual Morningside Lights - Play On! at Reclining Liberty

Remember you can pick up something to eat at the Down to Earth Morningside Park Farmers Market!



For your convenience here is a map of the 2021 Common Ground festival venues.




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