Tag Archives: NYRP

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

NYRP’s Hulaween in the Cosmos! October 29!

NYRP’s Hulaween in the Cosmos! October 29!

NYRP’s Hulaween

Mister D:
I was told Wynton Marsalis will be the musical guest

Are you ready to explore the final frontier? Well then fire up your rockets and join us for NYRP’s Hulaween in the Cosmos, on Monday, October 29, 2018, at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. Celebrating two committed leaders and dear friends of NYRP (Mica Ertegün and Darcy Stacom), this year’s intergalactic extravaganza will feature a Cosmic Costume Contest runway (judged by NYRP Trustee Michael Kors), signature cocktails and a feast by Danny Meyer’s Union Square Events, more stars than the Milky Way, and a galaxy of other surprises (stay tuned for the reveal of our headlining performer – you won’t want to miss them!). Read More

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Sunday, June 24, 2018

Bette Midler Tells AD About the Importance of Community Gardens (and Her Personal Garden Too!)

ARCHITECTURE + DESIGN
Bette Midler Tells AD About the Importance of Community Gardens (and Her Personal Garden Too!)
Posted June 22, 2018

Bette Midler, AD

Bette Midler joined Michael Kors as she enthusiastically lent her voice in support of the opening of Essex Street Community Garden in the heart of Brooklyn. “I’m screaming, and I’m going to lose my voice,” the Grammy winner exclaimed to the crowd as a series of elevated subway cars thundered overhead. “And we definitely don’t want that.” For nearly three decades Midler has been a champion of public green spaces through her nonprofit New York Restoration Project, which has helped develop more than fifty urban gardens throughout New York’s five boroughs. And in her private life, the singer’s passion for homegrown food has led her to cultivate a wide variety of vegetables in her own garden, which boasts as many as 20 kinds of peppers. Here, she shares with us some of her knowledge about both public and private gardening and preserving a cause that’s very important to her.

Architectural Digest: How long has this been a passion of yours?

Bette Midler: When I came back to New York in 1994, the place was a train wreck. Giuliani had just been elected, and there seemed to be a shift. I started picking up garbage along the West Side Highway. At that time there was no development along the West Side Highway at all, and they had been fighting over the waterfront since World War II. Somehow I started picking up garbage—and I’m not taking credit for this—but I will say that a lot of stuff started happening. I started this organization with a friend of mine in 1995 and we’ve been going ever since. These gardens are just part of what we do. We have 52 community gardens, but that’s just a little part of what we do. We teach children, we build parks, we’ve renovated parks—not community gardens. They’re two entirely different things. We have real estate all over town. These gardens we own, but we help the park department. We were instrumental in planting a million trees here in the city. That’s what we do.

AD: I actually just saw an old episode of the Simpsons that showed you picking up trash and chasing down litterbugs.

BM: That’s my favorite thing ever. It’s genius. They play it a lot and it’s my favorite thing.

Architectural Digest: Why do you think having garden space is important for everyone? Read More

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Thursday, June 14, 2018

Bette Midler Has The Green Fingers New Yorkers Love

Out Magazine
Bette Midler’s Green Fingers
BY GREG GARRY
JUNE 13 2018 12:00 PM EDT

Bette Midler, Shovel, Tree

New Yorkers will tell you they would literally kill for a bit of outdoor space.  Parks and community gardens are a precious commodity in this town, and a lifeline to stressed hot city dwellers both young and old.  Luckily the Big Apple has a seed-planting superhero in the one and only Bette Midler, who hosted a perfect summer evening picnic in East Harlem at one of the sites she helped rescue, and partied with Debbie Harry and Michael Kors and a room of generous benefactors.

Miss M. started the New York Restoration Project in 1995 with a goal to nurture and protect green spaces in low-income areas of all five boroughs.  “NYRP bought 52 plots from Mayor Guiliani, most of which had squatter gardens since the seventies. He was going to put them up for sale to developers, which I thought was unacceptable and I bought all 52.”  Along with executive director Deborah Marton and a truly dedicated staff, they are finishing up the last of the 52 spaces this year. “It’s been Read More

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Saturday, August 13, 2016

Sign The Petition Aiming To Turn 360 Unbuildable Lots In NYC Into Green Spaces For Bette’s Charity, NYRP

The Architect Newspaper
A new petition aims to turn 360 unbuildable lots in NYC into green spaces
By WIL BARLOW • August 12, 2016

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The New York Restoration Project (NYRP) has launched a petition to turn more than 360 lots deemed unbuildable into parks, gardens, and other green spaces, often in underserved neighborhoods.

These lots are considered unusable for building because of their odd size, shape, or proneness to flooding. Rather than leaving them abandoned, the NYRP is offering to transform these patches of land into usable green spaces. They are petitioning the Mayor’s office to place this land under their care.

Public parks are an incredibly valuable part of a neighborhood, with benefits to quality of life for residents as well as potential for urban farming and use as a community space. Parks are often few and far between in the neighborhoods that need them most, while those in more affluent neighborhoods tend to have more resources available for maintenance. By acquiring this otherwise unusable land from the city and relying on volunteers for labor, the NYRP would be able to provide an essential service to underserved neighborhoods in all five boroughs at a low cost, as well as cleaning up the vacant lots.

The NYRP just celebrated the 20th anniversary of its founding by Bette Midler in 1995. The non-profit organization revitalizes neglected parks across the five boroughs, specifically in underserved neighborhoods. In 1999, Midler and the NYRP led a coalition to save 114 community gardens being auctioned off by the city for commercial development. They now maintain 52 of those community gardens with the help of volunteers.

The organization also completed their MillionTreesNYC initiative on November 20, 2015, two years ahead of schedule. With the help of the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation, the NYRP planted one million trees across the five boroughs. They also offer free trees for New Yorkers to plant in their yards.

Sign the petition here, and find more opportunities to donate or volunteer on the NYRP website.

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Friday, June 3, 2016

2013 – Jane Jacobs Medal Awarded to NYRP Founder Bette Midler

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Tuesday, May 31, 2016

2012 – NYRP Founder Bette Midler Honored with the 2012 Doris Freedmon Award

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Sunday, May 15, 2016

BetteBack October 21, 1995: Bette Midler’s NYRP Teams Up With Partnership for Parks

Clearfield Progress
October 21, 1995

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Actress Bette Midler and her New York Restoration Project joins Partnership for Parks in a. 10,000-person effort to beautify city parks. The New “York Daily News helps spread the word of bench painting, bulb planting and leaf raking.

“When people are able to focus on a specific target, they can do wonders,” says Parks Commissioner Henry Stern, He says the No. 1 resource for city parks is people: “It’s the mothers, fathers and children. It’s the teens who play in the parks. Everyone.”

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Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Spring Picnic Welcomes Red Rooster & Sandra Bernhard

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Spring Picnic Welcomes Red Rooster & Sandra Bernhard

On June 1, 2016 NYRP will present its annual benefit, Spring Picnic 2016. The evening will feature delicious fare from New York City’s hottest restaurant, Red Rooster, located in the heart of East Harlem. Red Rooster serves comfort food celebrating the roots of American cuisine and the diverse culinary traditions of the neighborhood. Named after the legendary Harlem speakeasy, co-creators Andrew Chapman and Marcus Samuelsson opened Red Rooster offering a platform to celebrate local artists, musicians and culinary talents.

Sandra Bernhand named Mistress of Ceremonies for Spring Picnic. Bernhard began her career at L.A.’s famed Comedy Store in the ‘70s and has since written and starred in numerous one-woman shows, released three music albums, published three books and appeared on television shows including Roseanne, Two Broke Girls and Will & Grace. She continues to tour with her new live show Feel the Bernhard, spotlighting her sharp blend of hysterical insight and outspoken views with rock-n-roll, cabaret and standup.

Only a few tickets remain.
Click below to get your’s today! 

PURCHASE TICKETS

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Monday, May 9, 2016

BetteBack August 13, 1995: Bette Midler’s Manhattan Restoration Project

Lethbridge Herald
August 13, 1995

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Midler’s mission Ecology-minded Bette Midler is so fed up with urban debris, she’s taking matters into her own hands. Midler, who has bid adieu to L.A. in favor of permanent digs in New York City is waging war against the refuge-strewn streets of her beloved Big Apple. The ‘entertainer extraordinaire has  dug into her own pockets to fund ‘ the mammoth waste collection efforts of her newly formed organization, the Manhattan Restoration Project.

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Sunday, April 24, 2016

Restoring green to a city’s concrete hardscape

Japan Today
Restoring green to a city’s concrete hardscape
by Deborah Marton
APR. 24, 2016

bette-bas

Americans’ personal connection to the environment, which the founders of Earth Day hoped to restore nearly 50 years ago, is all but lost.

Today 80% of American families live in urban areas, the vast majority of which are densely populated and defined by concrete. There are no open vistas, unobstructed night skies or untouched forests.

So when people celebrated Earth Day on April 22, they should not only have reflected on how humans connect with the natural environment, but also with the built environment where many Americans actually live.

Americans have favored cars and buildings over trees and pedestrian zones, and the health of U.S. communities is suffering as a result. Traffic congestion, polluted air, vacant lots, asphalt parks – this is the environment that confronts millions of people every day as they go to school or work. This landscape, devoid of nature, has been directly tied to high U.S. rates of asthma, diabetes, obesity and other serious health problems.

Last year, President Barack Obama announced an effort to send 1 million fourth-grade children from low-income areas to national parks. This effort should be encouraged. But it also shows how few neighborhood parks are available to many Americans, especially in low-income communities. The question is: What is being done to create green spaces where those fourth graders live?

The sad answer: Not enough. The days when landscape architect Frederick Law Olmstead won prizes for sculpting parks into American cities – as he did with Central Park in New York City and Prospect Park in Brooklyn, New York – are long gone. America needs to find new ways of weaving nature back into the fabric of urban lives.

As a starting point, U.S policy makers and community leaders should agree that all Americans deserve access to serene and beautiful public spaces near their homes. A growing body of scientific research shows that connection to nature has tangible, positive benefits on people’s health and the economy. When people have access to parks, they breathe cleaner air. When people have trees to look at, they feel less stress and can recover faster from illness. Even photos of trees have been shown to make us feel better.

When cities scale up, more benefits accrue. Walkable neighborhoods with vibrant public spaces have been shown to bind communities closer together and to enable people to live longer. Large-scale investment in trees in a city cuts carbon emissions and can save money.

Fortunately, there are encouraging signs that municipalities are starting to embrace environmentally sustainable planning. Last fall, New York City, along with the New York Restoration Project, the nonprofit organization I lead that was founded by actress Bette Midler, reached its ambitious goal of planting 1 million trees. New trees are now growing in parks, gardens, business districts, medical centers, along sidewalks and more, under the leadership of Midler and former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

This goal was attainable in part because it included the largest tree-giveaway program in the United States. Our group gave trees to families in neighborhoods that were starved for them, which supplemented the work of thousands of volunteers and New York City Parks Department staff already planting trees along barren streets, in school yards and public housing complexes. Funding was crucial to the program’s success. It required private and public support, as well as help from many city administrations.

Boston, Los Angeles and London have undertaken similar projects. These cities also understand that green, livable cities help people lead more healthy, productive and even happier lives. New York and other cities have initiatives to help turn hundreds of vacant lots into community gardens and other functional spaces – reinventing how city dwellers relate to their environment.

One exciting benefit of these urban greening efforts is that they bring people together. In the South Bronx, for example, local residents are helping lead a new effort, called the Haven Project, to turn a neighborhood composed of asphalt parks, treacherous walkways and traffic congestion into a people-friendly hub with gardens, urban forests and water access. Residents came together and a scalable model is now in progress; the model tracks everything from traffic safety to asthma rates and obesity.

This South Bronx effort is critical for another reason: Low-income workers disproportionately live in unhealthy urban environments. In the South Bronx, for example, asthma rates are 50 percent higher than the New York City average and seven out of 10 residents are overweight or obese.

That is one reason why urban greening programs are popping up around the country, like the LA River Project and Denver’s bike lanes. Local and federal leaders must make green investments that support communities and their environments. Yet, proposed budget cuts for 2017 could imperil these positive trends.

As Earth Day’s founders look to a new generation to rethink how we use energy and tend to our environment, all need to remember the realities of how people actually connect to nature, particularly low-income Americans. Sometimes improvements might be as simple as planting and harvesting tomatoes in a community garden down the block – on that street corner that used to be an abandoned lot right next to a thriving shade tree that didn’t exist five years ago.

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