On Tuesday, June 14th we celebrated the expansion of the 103rd Street Community Garden in East Harlem. The Garden re-opening showcased the additional 2,200 square feet of space, bringing the total size of the garden to 17,600 square feet, approximately ½ an acre!
The new expansion highlighted a raised seating area overlooking the renovated lawn and built pathway. The latest edition to the northern side of the garden features an eco-shade covered patio complete with a set of picnic tables. Given these additions, there is now more space for grilling and gathering, landscape plantings, and a new site for the composting toilet.
The re-opening celebration was accompanied by a live local salsa band which provided the environment with an authentic Latin vibe. Fare was provided by StreetBird, a local rotisserie owned by celebrity chef and friend of NYRP, Marcus Samuelsson. More than 100 people were in attendance throughout the event, many of whom stayed to hear remarks from NYRP Executive Director Deborah Marton, Gabriel Hernandez from Assembly Member Robert Rodriguez’s office, Matthew Washington of Manhattan Borough President Gail Brewer’s office, and on behalf of the Walt Disney Company, WABC-TV Eyewitness News Anchor Sandra Bookman.
In addition to The Walt Disney Company’s generous donation, this expansion was made possible through materials and volunteer labor provided by The Home Depot, Scotts Miracle-Gro, and Old Castle/Belgard. As one of nine NYRP community gardens in a network of green spaces in East Harlem, the expansion of 103rd Street Community Garden will further strengthen the social and environmental resilience in this area. “Healthy green spaces directly impact quality of life — from public health and safety to happiness and civic engagement,” said Deborah Marton, NYRP Executive Director. “Every one of our adopted gardens strengthen the community it serves and, ultimately, fortifies the city as a whole.”
Although it’s a ways away, we hope to see you this summer in our beautiful 103rd Street garden for a Summer Movie Night on August 30 to watch The Incredibles (2004, PG) under the NYC sky! Join this average family of undercover superheroes as they use their powers in their suburban town to save the world. Film starts between 7:30 and 8:30pm at sunset. Complimentary hot popcorn will be provided. Be sure to mark your calendar and check out other fantastic free programs in other green spaces near you at www.nyrp.org/calendar!