One More Week to Visit Governors Island!

The 2014 public season, which opened Governors Island to visitors seven days a week for the first time in history, is ending on September 28th.

That means you have exactly seven days left to take a trip to Governors Island!

Nine days left to bike in the new 30 acres of park on Governors Island. Image by Lexi Quint, courtesy of the Trust.

Nine days left to bike in the new 30 acres of park on Governors Island. Image courtesy of The Trust.

Governors Island this week will be filled with events and exhibitions to help you wrap up the summer season!

Ride a Bike with Free Bike Mornings! 

Enjoy free bikes on Governors Island for one more week! Free Bike Mornings allows visitors to borrow a bike for free for up to one hour on any weekday. Bikers will be able to enjoy miles of bike paths, including new paths in the 30 acres of park that look upon the Statue of Liberty. Visitors are also able to rent bikes or bring a bike on the ferry at no extra charge.

“A Portrait of Marina Abromovic” by Matthu Placek in Fort Jay  

Matthu Placek is making his New York debut of his 3D video portraits on Governors Island this week! The piece, ” A Portrait of Marina Abramovic” will be installed in Fort Jay from September 25th through the 28th. Shot in one take and without dialogue, these short films offer rare, uninterrupted moments with subjects as they interact with symbolic surroundings. 3D cinematography enhances the intimacy of the vignettes, further collapsing the space between the viewer and the subjects’ essential natures. Screenings are every 15 minutes to groups of 6 people by reservation. To make a free reservation please visit www.130919.eventbrite.com

LMCC Open Studios 

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The LMCC gallery exhibition ““Embodied Practice and Site-Specificity” about Trisha Brown’s Work. Image courtesy of The Trust.

Explore the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council’s many programs this week on Governors Island. In the LMCC gallery (building 110), you will find an exhibition on the work of Trisha Brown. Over in the St Cornelius Church, you can experience the development of Rachel Tess’s “Souvenir” during open studio hours every day this week (12PM-4PM). LMCC describes the performance: “the project investigates the relationships between architecture and choreography and choreographer and audience. The work more specifically explores the concept of a mobile architecture versus pre-existing institutional structures and how this design may impact the making and viewing of performance.” This coming weekend is the LMCC Open Studio Weekend. There will be art’s activities and open studios at four unique sites, including Governors Island. See more information here.

Hammocks and Food vendors!

This is your last chance to nap in a hammock and take a hammock selfie! With the weather forecast estimated to be 70 degrees all week, it is the perfect time to snuggle in Hammock Grove and maybe bring a book. Afterwards, stroll over to Kings Ave and Liggett Terrace to the many food vendors for a quick bite. Get a taste of Snowday and decide if they deserved their recent Vendy Award (p.s. they totally did). Then back to the hammocks to sleep off that Snowday maple grilled cheese!

September 27th Governors Island Kite Festival 

Bring your kites or make one during the Governors Island Kite Festival! Brooklyn Artery, CMA, and the Brooklyn Kite Fest are coming together to bring you a Governors Island Kite Festival. There will be music, refreshments and fun to be had for the whole family.  All activities are free. The festival will run from 11-4PM.

Explore Nolan Park

Explore everything that makes Governors Island great  by heading to Nolan Park. The historic area is the home to 19th century Army officers houses. Today, these faded yellow buildings become the summer home for many arts and cultural organizations. Find handmade items for sale at Brooklyn Artery or Better than Jam, or see exciting exhibits at the New York Historical Society house and the International Center of Photography gallery. See further information on the more than 12 organizations in Nolan Park here. 

The Governors Island Art Fair

Sabrina Barrios, “How to Build a Pyramid.” Image courtesy of Hyperallergic.com.

Sabrina Barrios, “How to Build a Pyramid.” Image courtesy of Hyperallergic.com.

The 4 Heads Governors Island Art Fair will be open one more weekend. Already reviewed by the NYTimes, ArtNET, Gothamist and more, the Governors Island Art Fair is not to be missed! Around 100 rooms within the historic buildings in Colonels Row have been transformed by paintings, sculptures, video and sound installations, and other installation works. The Governors Island Art Fair is run by artists and has recently headed to Kickstarter. 

Governors Island National Monument is Among 20 Most Visited Monuments in the US

Fort Jay, part of Governors Island National Monument, is one of the most popular National Monuments in the entire nation (photo by A. Moore).

This week, the Los Angeles Times named America’s 20 most visited National Monuments. Governors Island National Monument shares the list with such beautiful and historic places as Fort McHenry, Muir Woods and the Statue of Liberty. View the entire list and slideshow.

In 2012, as the nation celebrates the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812, hopefully more visitors than ever will come to Fort Jay and Castle Williams and Governors Island. The Island opens on May 26 so get ready to plan your visit!

Cannonball!

The cannonball was found earlier today behind the seawall, near Soissons Dock

We often find interesting things on Governors Island, and today was no exception. This morning, while doing construction work near Soissons Dock, workers found an old cannon ball near the seawall. NYPD came out to assess the cannonball and determined that it was a solid shot made of iron and contained no explosive material.  Since it was deemed safe, it can now join other cannonballs that visitors see on the Island, like those near Fort Jay.

Cannonballs near the entrance to Fort Jay

The cannonball is about 12 inches in diameter and could have possibly come from the 15 inch cannons in Fort Jay or Castle Williams, but it is more likely that they were left over from when the Island was an arsenal and surplus cannonballs were sent here. In historic photos from the Army era, one can see that cannonballs were very prevalent and were often piled in front of buildings or used for decorative purposes on lawns.

Cannonballs, like those seen here on the right, were placed on the lawn outside of Pershing Hall. (photo from NY Public Library)

In 1942, most of these were hauled off to melt into scrap metal to support the war effort, but perhaps one or two remained behind, like the one we found today!

This historic photo shows a cannon at Fort Jay with cannon balls at the ready. (photo from NY Public Library)

ZviDance. Back again for a final preformance of ‘White’

Come out to Governors Island for this final performance of ‘White’, the acclaimed dance piece by director Zvi Gothenier, six dancers and composer Scott Killian. It is part of a summer series by the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council and the River to River Festival. Together they have collaborated to create a piece “using Fort Jay’s historical significance and eerie sense of abandonment to reflect on our attempts to feel secure by arming our borders. The dancers wrap areas of the site with long white gauze strips reminiscent of bandages, slowly creating a web-like sculpture intertwining throughout the space” LMCC.

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