Good of the Hive

An art installation designed  for Dag  Hammarskjold Plaza draws attention to the importance of honey bees to our food supply and environment. Muralist Matt Willey created  193 painted panels of bees to represent the number of UN-member nations. Already, the artist has made his mark with  bee murals for organizations that include Burt’s Bees corporate headquarters, prestigeous museums and  public spaces.

The park’s entrance dome represents a swarm of bees that have flown from the symbolic bee hives seen on the sculpture platform next to the fountain. 

“The Good of the Hive Initiative begins with the struggle of the honeybees, but it also views the hive as a metaphor for communities of people,”says Willey. 

“Honeybees within the hive ‘think’ collectively; their immune system is collective: the health of the individual is based on the health of the collective.    Whether that community is an actual honeybee hive or the American people as a whole, the health and success of the individual relies heavily on the connections within groups. This is the essence of The Good of the Hive Initiative.”

“We want to  stimulate dialogue and awareness  of how the health of the honey bee impacts our own health and food supply,” says FDHP President Sherrill Kazan.

WHAT’S AILING THE HONEY BEES? Colony Collapse is a disorder in which large numbers of bees disappear from the hive, abandoning their queen. First reported in 2006, the vanishing bees seem to have lost their homing instinct, as if their DNA were damaged. The use of pesticides  known as neonicotinoids has been implicated, but without conclusive evidence, the chemical continues to be widely used in large-scale industrial agriculture.  

 

Play Piano in Dag Park

The “Sing for Hope” piano is back this year for a three-week stay in the park beginning June 6th.  Amateurs and professionals are welcome to play, kids included. The piano is  near fountain at Dag’s Patio Cafe.

IF you’re a performer(s) with an “act”, i.e. sing and play piano, four hands, etc,  we will schedule a showcase and spread the word. Send an email with contact info and your idea (20 to 30 minute showcase)  to fdhp@hammarskjoldplaza.org.

After a 3-week stint in public space around the city, the piano will be donated to a public school, senior center, etc. For more information about the Sing for Hope program, visit the website https://www.singforhope.org

Katharine Hepburn Garden Party, Sat. May 5th

Our spring season kick-off. NY Swing Trio entertains. Enjoy Kate’s birthday cake and garden tours. Come meet your neighbors and find out about new programs, events  and volunteer opportunities. Flowers on parade!  Bring your friends–it’s free and fun!

 

Saturday, May 13, 1pm to 3 pm. Rain-date May 14, same time. The Katharine Hepburn Garden is located in Dag Hammarskjold Plaza,  East 47th Street between 1st and 2nd Avenues in Manhattan. 

Hot off the press: Year in Review

Read our latest newsletter online. If you are a member, the printed version has been mailed. See photos of our vibrant community at work and play. Enjoy memories of Oktoberfest, the Sing for Hope Piano, cafe scene, and the parade of pooches, “Dag Dogs.” We’re making major  improvements as an agent of change.  Check out our volunteer opportunities and help  beautify and enrich our town square and garden.

Click here for “Year in Review”

 

Annual Members Meeting, Nov. 16, 6:30PM

Friends of Dag Hammarskjold Plaza holds our annual members meeting on Nov. 16th at 6:30 PM, 224 East 47th Street, Vanderbilt Y, 5th Floor conference room. All current members vote for the slate of officers and directors. We have invited the Parks Department to present scope of work to be performed with Capital Funding awarded to Hammarskjold Park by Councilman Dan Garodnick. By law, we also provide  a financial review.  Refreshments served. Come meet your neighbors, city officials and find out how you can get involved in park preservation, programming and upkeep.

Oktoberfest Saturday, Oct 21

Oktoberfest returns to Dag Plaza with pumpkins galore. Kids decorate pumpkins; the clown paints their faces and twists balloons. Adults enjoy live music and meet neighbors. Scroll down to view flyer and share with friends. 

Dag’s Patio Cafe is cooking up a special Oktoberfest bratwurst and beer combo in addition to their regular fare for purchase.

Park High Security Sept 20-30–Marches, Protests & Heads of State

This is NOT the week for a leisurely stroll through the Plaza. From Sept. 20 to Sept. 30, Hammarskjold Plaza is on high-security or  lockdown when state officials visit the United Nations during the General Assembly.  Expect marches and  protest groups from around the globe, some with amplified sound. Tudor City Place and East 41st through East 47th streets from First Avenue to Second Avenue will  be closed while the Assembly is in session.

The garden is closed and barricaded. Trash bins have been sequestered behind barricades.

The NYPD will completely close First Avenue between East 34th and East 49th streets to traffic because of the security required when world leaders congregate by the dozens at U.N. Headquarters. Police will also restrict the use of the eastern parking lane of Second Avenue to law enforcement and emergency personnel only.

 

 

Piano in Dag Plaza “Sing for Hope”

Starting June 6, Play Piano in Dag Plaza. Spread the gift of music! 

A hand-painted piano installed by the nonprofit organization “Sing for Hope” offers an open invitation to anyone who wishes to play during its 3-week stay.  Each year,  50 Sing-for-Hope Pianos are hand painted by volunteer artists and donated to schools and community centers after their debut in NYC public spaces.

“The pianos serve as a symbol and celebration of art for all,” says project coordinator Chris Sweatt. “Last year, the pianos had a one-hundred percent survival rating due to our protective tarps and piano-buddy system.”

Anyone can step up and tickle the keys, children included. The program also provides featured artists to be announced.

The piano in Hammarskjold Plaza will be located in the “lounge area” between Dag’s Patio Cafe and the cobblestone entrance to the Katharine Hepburn Garden. This more protected placement enhances cafe ambience and invites visitors to explore the newly planted garden. If you would like to schedule a Noon or Happy Hour performance, contact FDHP and we will post on chalkboard. Let’s have some fun!

Credit: “With Liberty and Jazz for All” painted by Jennifer Kakaletris Boyar

BE A “PIANO BUDDY” 

We need volunteer  “Piano Buddies” to cover the piano with a tarp when rain is forecast. Please call 826-8980 and leave your contact information

UPDATE Garden Party on Sunday, May 14

Due to heavy rain forecast for Saturday, the event will take place on Sunday. Tents will cover sound equipment and cake–but bring your umbrella in case of a light spring shower. Pretend we’re in England where ceremonies in the rain are  common. Free hugs for Mom on Mothers Day!

See the thousands of new plants in Katharine Hepburn Garden. The newly laid path will keep your shoes dry and out of the mud. Springtime showers bring lovely flowers!

FABULOUS Garden Party, Sat. May 13

It’s been 20 years since the first Katharine Hepburn Garden Party, and this one is VERY SPECIAL. Come see thousands of new plants in the garden, the result of a major rejuvenation project by FDHP. As you stroll the newly-laid path, enjoy quotes  by the famous actress who helped preserve the trees and charming character of  Turtle Bay. We continue to partner with the Turtle Bay Association on this popular annual event that kicks off spring with live music and free cake. This year, cabaret and Broadway singer Hannah Harding entertains with favorites from the Great American Songbook. Come meet your neighbors and get to know this legendary park and neighborhood.

Saturday, May 13, 1pm to 3 pm. Rain-date May 14, same time. The Katharine Hepburn Garden is located in Dag Hammarskjold Plaza,  East 47th Street between 1st and 2nd Avenues in Manhattan.