Saturday, June 6, 2015, Part 1

After not sleeping so well last night, I woke up to a text message that Michael was headed here to start the day.

I took a couple pictures out our window.  It’s really sunny out but these pictures make it look pretty grim:

 

After milling around a bit, we decided to go to a diner I’d seen last night.  On the way, it started raining.  We got to the diner and it was closed so we headed to another one.

We ended up at Amelia’s Diner and had breakfast.

On the way to Tribeca Park, we saw Duarte Square

Juan Pablo Duarte Square

This text is part of Parks’ Historical Signs Project and can be found posted within the park.

In the late 1600s the land that is now Juan Pablo Duarte Square was developed as a farm by Trinity Church. A forty-foot-wide canal was built to the south in 1810 to drain the pestilent Collect Pond into the Hudson River. The canal was filled in 1819 and now forms Canal Street. As the city spread northward, this became an important commercial thoroughfare. Canal Street achieved further prominence with the construction of the Holland Tunnel at its western end in 1927.

Juan Pablo Duarte Square was officially dedicated in 1945, when Sixth Avenue was renamed Avenue of the Americas in celebration of Pan-American unity. The name of the square, located near the southern end of the Avenue of the Americas, honors Juan Pablo Duarte (1813-1876), the liberator of the Dominican Republic.

As a young man, Duarte founded a society called La Trinitaria which sought to promote democratic ideals among the Spanish-speaking inhabitants of Hispaniola Island, most of whom were clustered around the city of Santo Domingo. In 1843 Duarte launched an attempt to free the eastern half of the island from Haitian rule. When the rebellion failed, Duarte fled Hispaniola. However, when a new revolution succeeded in winning independence for the Dominican Republic in February 1844, Duarte was invited to return as President of the new republic. Although he eventually lost control to a military dictator and died in exile, Duarte was instrumental in developing the Pan-American traditions of democracy and self-government celebrated by the Avenue of the Americas.

Duarte Square, a triangular plot bounded by Sullivan Street, Grand Street, and the Avenue of the Americas at the intersection with Canal Street, was initially developed and maintained by the Department of Transportation. The square was improved in 1975 with the addition of benches, trees, and sidewalks.

On May 26, 1977, Duarte Square was transferred to the Department of Parks. A statue of Juan Pablo Duarte, donated by the Consulate of the Dominican Republic, was dedicated in the square on the 165th anniversary of Duarte’s birth, January 26, 1978. The thirteen-foot bronze figure, which rests atop an eight-foot granite base, was designed by the Italian sculptor Nicola Arrighini. It is one of a pantheon of six monuments to Latin American leaders which overlook the Avenue of the Americas.

We continued on to Tribeca Park and no one had put the tarp over the piano so it was pretty unplayable 😦

The next stop was Albert Capsouto Park

Albert Capsouto Park

Laight St., Canal St., and Varick St.

Manhattan

Directions via Google Maps

Capsouto Park, named for neighborhood activist Albert Capsouto (1956-2010), is a vital public space located at the triangle between Canal, Varick, and Laight Streets in Lower Manhattan. Once a parking lot, this park opened in 2009 as one of the more than 30 parks and open spaces funded through the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation’s revitalization project.The park features lush plantings and an award-winning design. The park’s new plantings include a double row of canopy and street trees and three large planting beds filled with low flowering shrubs and colorful perennials. Nestled into the edges of the planting beds are several continuous rows of contemporary benches and a small cluster of chess tables at the southwestern gate. At each of the three entrances to the triangle are etched stainless steel plaques with images from the New York Historical Society, New York Public Library and Library of Congress that tell of the area’s urban evolution

The centerpiece of Capsouto Park is a 114-foot long sculptural fountain by SoHo artist Elyn Zimmerman. This fountain bisects the interior space. Water spills from an 8-foot tower into a series of stepped “locks” evoking the canal that once flowed along the Canal Street. A sunning lawn rises up to meet the fountain from the south and granite seat walls adorn the fountain to the north.

We stopped by Freeman Plaza East but it was on a “break”(?)

In the street, though were some odd rocks called lemniscatus.

Lemniscatus

From there back to our hotel so Michael could go to his training session.

And, so ends the morning.

One response

  1. […] Michael’s workout, I wrote part 1 of today’s post.  When he arrived at the hotel, we set out for Tribeca Park on our search […]

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