Join the Friends of Olmsted-Beil House for a fascinating presentation by Justin Martin, author of Genius of Place: The Life of Frederick Law Olmsted. Justin will highlight Olmsted’s travels to England while he lived at Tosomock Farm on Staten Island, and his subsequent writings about these travels. Olmsted departed from Staten Island for a walking tour of England in April 1850, returned in October, and both wrote (1851) and published (1852) his observations in Walks and Talks of an American farmer in England while on Staten Island. Discussion will address how these travels influenced Olmsted’s social thinking and landscape designs, and there will be Q&A for in-person and virtual attendees. In-person attendees are invited to a reception following with light refreshments and Friends of Olmsted-Beil House items available for purchase, including Genius of Place and the Olmsted on Staten Island Discovery Map.
IMPORTANT:Tickets are available for this in-person, indoor lecture at the Parish House at New Dorp Moravian Church on Staten Island, or to watch a live stream of the lecture on Zoom. If we must cancel the in-person lecture due to COVID-related guidelines, the lecture will be presented at the same time remotely, and all “in-person” registrants will have the option to receive a refund or to switch to remote attendance.
Health & Safety Guidelines
PROOF OF VACCINATION REQUIRED FOR IN-PERSON ATTENDANCE: Under the Key to NYC program(updated December 15, 2021), proof of a full course of a COVID-19 vaccination is required (two doses for all vaccines except the one-dose Johnson & Johnson; booster is not required) for all attendees age 5 or older.
In order to be admitted, you must bring a photo ID (if 18 or older) and one of the following, which will be checked at the entrance:
Masks must be worn indoors at all times by all attendees, except when eating or drinking, regardless of age or vaccination status, per New York State guidelines.
Please make note of these other guidelines for this program:
Maintain social distancing: In order to ensure everyone’s safety and comfort, we ask that everyone stay at least 6 feet apart from people who are not in their immediate pod or group.
If you are feeling unwell before the program, please let us know so that we can refund your ticket or switch you to the virtual option.
We have a zero-tolerance policy for individuals who endanger staff, visitors, and partners by refusing to abide by these rules, or who engage in verbal or physical harassment, displays discriminatory or threatening behavior, or otherwise interferes with the experience of others. Attendees who violate these policies may be asked to leave the event without a refund.
We will collect and retain the names and contact information of all event attendees in the event that contact tracing efforts are necessary, and this information may be shared with public health authorities.
Even if you have received a vaccine, you must abide by all of these rules.
In-Person Admission: $10 per person
Virtual Admission: $10 per household
Advance ticket purchase is required
Turnstile Members can sign up for the virtual option using their Member ID
Please note that while the postal address is Richmond Rd, the entrance to the Church grounds is on Todt Hill Rd, at the corner with Richmond Rd, located in Moravian Cemetery.
PUBLIC TRANSIT: The Parish House is a short walk from the Grant City stop on the Staten Island Railroad, and trains depart the St. George Ferry Terminal every 30 minutes. Visit mta.info for schedules and service changes.
DRIVING AND PARKING: The entrance to the church grounds is located just off Todt Hill Rd, near the junction with Richmond Rd. On-site parking is available for attendees.
Though often overlooked due to his association with Frederick Law Olmsted, Calvert Vaux is an important figure in American architecture in his own right. A classically-trained architect, talented artist, and collaborator with landscape designer Andrew Jackson Downing, he had already done major projects before working with Olmsted on Central Park, and would continue to design parks and public buildings after their partnership dissolved. To mark Vaux’ 197th birthday, we will examine his 40-year career in New York City, his distinctive architectural style, and his legacy of designing buildings and landscapes for the public good, including museums, parks both large and small, and housing for the poor.
This program has been postponed. Please stay tuned for a new date in 2022.
There is a new, colorful, monumental artwork in Prospect Park—We Are At a Moment That Will Be Remembered as the Beginning of the Great Change, For Who Can Say When a Wall Is Ready To Come Down by Emily Oliveira now fills the Lena Horne Bandshell. Commissioned by BRIC and Prospect Park Alliance, in partnership with NYC Parks, the mural depicts figures working collectively to dismantle a wall, framed by swirling cosmos. In this virtual program, we will join Emily from her studio in New Haven, as well as BRIC Curator Jenny Gerow, as they discuss her work, her creative process, and the art and artists that inspired this piece, including Mexican muralism—particularly José Clemente Orozco’s Prometheus—science fiction, and the murals of the Works Progress Administration, which built the Bandshell in 1941. The virtual program is presented with support from BRIC and Prospect Park Alliance.
Join the conversation during Climate Week NYC with Prospect Park Alliance‘s Forest Ecologist Howard Goldstein. Howard will share insights on the unique challenges the part faces as the borough’s only forest, and what impact climate change is having the composition of the forest, the biodiversity that it supports, and the pests that threaten its health in the short- and long-term future.
To celebrate Brooklyn Battle Week, take a virtual walk through Prospect Park and follow the battle lines of the largest engagement of the Revolutionary War. We will see see where American forces tried unsuccessfully to stop the British advance at Battle Pass, follow the path some used to escape to join the main battle in Gowanus, and visit the many Revolutionary War monuments in the park, including Daniel Chester French’s sculpture to the Marquis de Lafayette and Stanford White’s memorial to the 1st Maryland Regiment.
Built in 1874, the Concert Grove Pavilion is a stunning example of Prospect Park co-designer Calvert Vaux’ colorful and decorative style. Earlier this year, the Prospect Park Alliance completed a $2 million restoration of the pavilion, which was last restored in 1988. Joined by Prospect Park Alliance Assistant Architect Sheena Enriquez, we will look closely at the pavilion’s beautiful details, including its cast iron columns that contain motifs borrowed from Hindu, Chinese, Moorish, and Egyptian architecture, its elaborate roof finials and eaves, and its newly-illuminated stained glass ceiling. Sheena will share how the restoration team did extensive archival research, conducted color testing to match the pavilion’s original design, and repaired and recreated damaged or missing pieces.
Did you know that Prospect Park has a piece of Gettysburg’s famed Little Round Top? And one of the oldest statues of Abraham Lincoln in America? While memorials to the Civil War are prominent features of the park, the war itself also shaped its design. Co-designer Frederick Law Olmsted spent the war directing the US Sanitary Commission, which provided medical care to the Union Army, and that experience influenced his ideas on public space and public health. On this virtual tour, we will explore the park’s many Civil War connections, from Grand Army Plaza to the Parade Ground.
Join us for a special panel discussion and virtual tour of Staten Island’s landmark Olmsted-Beil House, an historic farmhouse and museum where landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted began his monumental career. While Central Park, Prospect Park, and countless other parks across America display Olmsted’s genius, beginning in 1848, this farmstead is where he developed his professional interest in landscape design. Here he learned horticulture, experimented with different plants and landscape forms, and wrote about his travels to public parks in Europe. On this program, we will explore the property grounds with historian and Friends of the Olmsted-Beil House board member Patricia Salmon, and we will be joined by Justin Martin, author of Olmsted biography Genius of Place.
On this virtual walk, we will join Prospect Park Alliance’s gardeners for a tour of their work doing spring plantings around the Lakeside section of the park, including on the intensive green roof garden atop the LeFrak Center skating rink. Corbin Laedlein, Lakeside Lead EcoZone Gardener for the Alliance, will walk us through the landscape and discuss how they choose different plants for ecological, aesthetic, habitat purposes.
April 26 is Frederick Law Olmsted’s birthday, and for his 199th, the National Association of Olmsted Parks is kicking off a yearlong celebration as we approach his bicentennial in 2022. The first event is a panel discussion of Rebecca Messner’s 2011 documentary Olmsted and America’s Urban Parks (which prominently features Prospect Park) with TIME Magazine’s Justin Worland; Dr. Thaisa Way, Professor of Landscape Architecture at the University of Washington; Happy Haynes, Executive Director of Denver Parks and Recreation; and Justin DiBerardinis, Director of Philadelphia’s FDR Park. When you sign up for the free panel discussion, you will receive a link to watch the documentary for free at your convenience on April 24 or 25.
To learn more about the bicentennial campaign honoring and exploring Frederick Law Olmsted, please visit www.olmsted200.org, and we will be posting special events related to Olmsted’s life and work in New York in the coming weeks.