The summer of 2018 is one to remember for Greenwich Village and Astor Place! People danced on the streets. Giant cubes were painted and miniature cities created. Mariachi bands sang and DJ's spun. Restaurants and shops came out, and so did you! From Positively 8th Street to Astor Alive! it has been a summer to remember.
The Village Alliance raised the curtain on a summer of programming with the Astor Blaster Silent Disco on June 1st when over 400 revelers came together around the iconic Alamo sculpture to dance into the night, with beats from three live DJs.
At Astor Place, music continued through the summer powered by the Village Alliance and Joes Pub partnership resulting in three live music festivals; the Astor Place Black Tar Beach Party, Joes Pub at Astor Alive!, and the Joes Pub Block Party Voices of Immigrant America. A combined audience of over two thousand people enjoyed twelve hours of free live music from over fifteen musicians and groups at the three events.
Musical art became visual art at the third annual Creativity Cubed, this year taking on a new spin and concept. The tradition of cube decorating continued with one huge temporary cube for people to paint, spray, draw, and create on, resulting in the community creating a collaborative piece of public art. British artist Mark John-Smith, who also gave people the opportunity to design their very own Astor Place t-shirts to take home, created this years Creativity Cubed concept.
The Astor Place programing was made possible by the generous support of our sponsors and community partners, including Joes Pub, Con Edison, Vornado Realty Trust, GFP Real Estate, Edward J. Minskoff Equities, and New York University.
Over on West 8th Street the Positively Eight Street Festival returned for its sixth year. Thousands turned out to enjoy three fun-filled summer Saturdays on West 8th Street. Now a firm favorite on the Greenwich Village calendar the free family event included hours of live music from Village favorites such as Richard Barone & Friends to Coyote & Crow, to new emerging acts including The Angry Kickin Feet and Katje Larrssen.
Many of the streets restaurants and bars came onto the street offering outdoor service, while pop-up parks, playgrounds, and seating areas provided plenty of space for visitors to relax and enjoy the atmosphere and car free environment. There were also plenty of free arts and crafts activities, games, and much more.
For the seventeenth consecutive year, the Village Alliance provided free Saturday morning walking tours of Greenwich Village. Taking place every Saturday morning over twelve weeks, the tours led by three licensed guides provided hundreds of guests a new and unique insight into the rich and vibrant history of Greenwich Village.
The Village Alliance has also been proud to collaborate with community groups to co-host and co-sponsor several other events through the summer. These include the Greenwich Village Scavenger Hunt with the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation and Urban Archive. The Thrive NYC Mental Health Wellness & Kindness resource fair at Astor Place, the Faces and Voices of Manhattan's Neighborhood Store Fronts exhibit by James & Karla Murray, the inaugural Village Trip music festival, and a social media-training seminar for small businesses with Facebook.
The worlds largest rhino sculpture, The Last Three, headlined the Village Alliances expanded public art program. World-renowned monumental artists, Gillie & Marc, created the massive sculpture depicting the last three remaining Northern White Rhinos in Sydney, Australia. Unveiled in March, the sculpture attracted global attention with thousands of people visiting Astor Place to view and photograph the sculpture.
In Greenwich Village at the Ruth Wittenberg Triangle, the Village Alliance commissioned the Poetry Jukebox which plays twenty poems featuring the voices of Jane Jacobs, Allen Ginsberg, and Jack Kerouac among others. The Poetry Jukebox was conceived by the Czech project Piána na ulici (Pianos on the Street), led by the coffee house owner Ond?ej Kobza and cultural manager Michaela He?ková whose mission is to animate public spaces worldwide.
The Village Alliance extends its thanks to all those who attended this summers events, our supporters and sponsors, and producing partners who together have truly made it a summer to remember.
Stay up-to-date with news about our fall and winter programing by following Greenwich Village and Astor Place social media and visiting the events pages of our websites.