Simon and Garfunkel’s iconic album—The Concert in Central Park—was recorded on this date on the Great Lawn 33 years ago in 1981. The album was released a few months later in February of 1982.
The New York Times called it “a wonderful concert,” with “one of the finest groups of musicians ever to play together at a New York rock concert,” and a “valentine to the city.” And while history records that “several hundred thousand” people jammed the Great Lawn, it was probably closer to 50,000.
But all those people and all those concerts took their toll on the Great Lawn, and by the close of the decade it was commonly known as the “Great Dust Bowl" for its lack of greenery and grass. In 1995, Central Park Conservancy undertook an $18 million project to restore the Great Lawn. Today, the lawn is still great and full of life. And music.
erinaroundtown: The Central Park Conservatory Garden
The Conservatory Garden is like catnip for the amateur photographer who is into closeups of flowers. Don’t be surprised if an entire post is dedicated to this very subject.
The original post was edited to correct the name of the garden.
In honor of the 200th anniversary of the construction of the War of 1812 fortifications, Central Park Conservancy is focusing attention on a critical but largely unknown part of Central Park: The Fort Landscape. Located off 106th Street south of the Harlem Meer, this area was the site of three forts (Fort Fish, Fort Clinton, and the area known as McGown’s Pass) built by Americans in August of 1814 to defend against the British.
Gain a rare glimpse of the pre-Park history of this area and learn about the Conservancy’s recent work in this landscape with these upcoming programs.
Central Park’s northern landscapes, less altered by the design and construction of the Park, offer one of the few remaining windows into the pre-urban landscape of New York City. 6:30-8 p.m.
Friday, September 19 - Uncovering the Fort Landscape Tour
Join Central Park Conservancy for a tour of the Fort Landscape focusing on the rich pre-Park history of this area, evidence of which is still visible in the landscape. 1-2:30 p.m.
In celebration of the reinstallation of Central Park’s cannons this fall Central Park Conservancy presents an illustrated talk about the rediscovered history of these artifacts and more. 6:30-7:30 p.m.
History buffs will love this tour of key sites in the American Revolution and the War of 1812. 12-1:30 p.m.
Historic images courtesy of nyhistory.
Millions of people create millions of moments across every acre of Central Park. Weddings and proposals. Baby’s first steps. Running a personal best. A quiet moment of reflection.
Central Park Conservancy works tirelessly to maintain and restore your Park making new moments possible every day.
The next time you find yourself stopped in your tracks, moved to tears, engulfed in happiness, or centered and grounded, share your moment with us.
Your moment made possible by Central Park Conservancy. Contribute to your moment.
Huge thanks to nyprarchives for unearthing this amazing audio tour to Central Park from 1971. While many things have changed, many more have stayed the same. This audio guide was created by Pan Am Airlines and came with an accompanying map. If you’d like to recreate the experience with modern technology, download our mobile app for iOs or Android. Our star-studded audio tour and in-app map means you have no need for an extra map you have to struggle to fold!
And if anyone has a copy of the original map, let us know in the comments below, or send a note to the New York Public Radio archivists. We’d love to see it!
As the epic, multigenerational migration of monarch butterflies gets under way it seems a great time to answer a question we are asked frequently, “What is Central Park Conservancy doing to support monarch butterfly populations?”
It has been widely reported that monarch butterfly populations are on the decline due to increasingly erratic weather and habitat loss (though early reports from the 2014 migration point to possible population rebound). The monarch migration takes the butterflies from their summer homes in the northern regions of the United States (and southern Canada) to their winter homes in the mountains of the state of Michoacán in Mexico.
Monarch butterflies lay their eggs exclusively on milkweed, plants in the Asclepias genus. Several species of milkweed are native to the United States, and are the only plants that monarch larvae will eat (adult butterflies will collect nectar from a variety of plants). The larvae and adults isolate toxic compounds from the milkweed plants which give them a noxious, bitter flavor and, for the most part, protect them against predation. But milkweed populations are on the decline for a number of reasons.
To that end, Central Park Conservancy has made a concerted effort to plant milkweed throughout the Park. According to Maria Hernandez, the Conservancy’s Director of Horticulture, we are “always looking for opportunities to install plants that attract pollinators.” Conservancy horticulturists incorporate these plants—including several species of native milkweed—into existing beds, butterfly gardens, meadows, and native plantings. And then there are the “aha plantings” that Hernandez describes as “little surprises for the public” (and for the butterflies, too!).
Central Park’s many diverse landscapes provide lots of places for butterflies to rest, warm up, and recover their strength along their migration route. So keep your eyes peeled as fall advances, and you just might see some intrepid individuals setting out for their epic, 3,000 mile migration. And if you have your own city or suburban garden check out these great tips from the Wild Center on how to support monarch butterflies in your own backyard (or on your own patio). To follow the migration, bookmark this page on Journey North and signup for updates from MonarchWatch.org.
On the fly - New York City, NY | September 3, 2014 by benlowy.
Do you dream of running in the TCS New York City Marathon but don’t have entry? You’re in luck! A few spots have recently opened up on Team Central Park. Help us run the Park while you run through the Park on your way to the finish line of the New York City Marathon!
All Team Central Park members commit to raising $3,000 for Central Park Conservancy, the non-profit organization that cares for the Park. Guarantee your spot in this premier event and support our mission to restore, manage, and enhance Central Park at the same time!
Amazing insects, vibrant wildflowers, delicate roses, majestic American Elms, trees appearing as sculptures and dramatic clouds over the city skyline and The Lake experienced during my lovely and peaceful walks through Central Park in the last few days. By agh212