Fort Greene Park

Fort Greene Park

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Partnerships for Parks began its most intensive involvement in Fort Greene in June of 1999 when it designated the park as one of five Catalyst sites. At the time, Partnerships had identified the Committee for The Restoration of Fort Greene Park as the most active group involved in the park, and the group it would be working most closely with on the Catalyst project. A year and a half into the project, the Committee for the Restoration of Fort Greene Park applied for its 501(c)3 and changed its name to the Fort Greene Park Conservancy. Despite challenges with the Conservancy model in a small park and neighborhood like Fort Greene, there were many successes in the Conservancy's first three and half years in the park. Halloween became a yearly fixture in the park that probably would not have happened without the Conservancy’s involvement. The Conservancy did all of the fundraising after the first event and organized volunteers. The Conservancy also sponsored Swing Dance in the Park on the tennis courts, which drew a diverse crowd of over 1,500. They raised funds for and dedicated a Richard Wright bench by partnering with another local arts group and plan two other commemorative benches. The Conservancy also raised funds for and produced the only newsletter for the park on a quarterly basis. They helped sponsor the premier of two operas in the park and raised $40,000 on relatively short notice to continue the summer film series that had been started by CPF in the summer of xxxx. While CPF chose to hold the film series on the southern side of the park, because access is easier, the Conservancy held theirs on the northern side of the park, close to the public housing area. The film series became the first large-scale event held on the northern side of the park and showed that the Conservancy was concerned with including the entire neighborhood in the rebirth of the park. By holding so many successful events, the Conservancy helped reshape the image of the park, which is now viewed as a community asset and resource instead of a liability.

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