The first-ever Emerald Necklace Parkfest will be the year’s biggest event for Olmsted Now, which is Greater Boston’s Olmsted Bicentennial. This free event will on Sept. 24 will span across parks of the Emerald Necklace, and will include free performances, kids' activities, art, games, dancing, and more. There will be picnic zones, parade decorating, data "community listening boards", and Necklace-wide scavenger hunts to prompt exploring the parks. Community groups and organizations will also be showcasing the ways they make the Greater Boston a great place for parks and public spaces.
Boston's Mayor’s Mural Crew and the National Park Service created a series of temporary chairs across the Emerald Necklace to commemorate the bicentennial celebration of Frederick Law Olmsted. The park furnishings, named “never too much, always enough,” features 24 chairs in six sites across the Emerald Necklace, which was designed by Olmsted. The chairs were built by repurposing the distinctive white spruce-pole fence that was designed by Olmsted, to surround the Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site in Brookline (Fairsted). Jamaica Plain resident Heidi Schork, who founded The Mayor’s Mural Crew, designed the chair with an inspiration to use the same curves found in Fairsted’s beautiful fence, according to a press release. The chair are at the following locations:
Jamaica Pond, in the southwest corner overlooking the pond and in the northwest corner amongst the trees
Franklin Park, to the left of Franklin Park Golf Course Clubhouse and at the top of Scarborough Hill (by Hole 12 of the golf course)
Allerton Overlook, off of Pond Avenue by Olmsted Park’s Leverett Pond
Back Bay Fens, off of Park Drive behind the James P. Kelleher Rose Garden
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This project was conceptualized and brought to life by a group of youth artists employed through Boston’s Department of Youth Employment, together with adult artists employed for the Boston Parks Department, including: Aiyanna Canty, Aminah Yahya, Bobby Zabin, Camila Aguilera-Steinert, Eli Swanson, Emmett Hughes, Heidi Schork (Program Director, The Mayor’s Mural Crew), Inez Bendavid-Val, Jamar Joseph, Jerome Jones (Lead Artist, The Mayor’s Mural Crew), Kayla Depina, Laniya Harding, Liz O’Brien (Program Manager, The Mayor’s Mural Crew), Lucy Edelstein-Rosenberg, Maia Poremba, Madalen Bigsby-Licht, Nalani Reid, Niamh Mulligan, Tony Depina, Xavier James, Xzavier Santiago, and Zariyah Wilkerson.
Olmsted Now recently announced a parks equity and spatial justice grant in partnership with the Emerald Necklace Conservancy. The bicentennial of the birth of Frederick Law Olmsted is marked by Greater Boston with Olmsted Now, a collaboration to amplify the vibrancy and inclusivity of parks and publics pace. Olmsted Now aims to strengthen equity and community connection in Boston by centering decision-making for bicentennial programs with a Committee of Neighborhoods—Boston leaders trusted for their commitment to under-heard voices and under-served open spaces. Committee of Neighborhoods members draw from around Boston and especially areas adjacent to the southern parks of the Emerald Necklace and those that are especially valued by neighbors who identify as Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC). To create opportunities for equitable and community-based parks programming for the Bicentennial, the Committee of Neighborhoods has launched the Olmsted Now Parks Equity and Spatial Justice Grant, offering 20 grants in total.
Frederick Law Olmsted's 200th birthday was April 26 and the Mayor's Mural Crew celebrated it in a very unique way -- with a moss graffiti installation on the Jamaica Pond Boathouse. The installation was part of the celebration of his birthday on April 26. The moss graffiti installation is an Olmsted quote: "Gradually and silently the charm comes over us; we know not exactly where or how." https://twitter.com/mayorsmuralcrew/status/1519329220392071170
America’s great place-maker Frederick Law Olmsted—who created the field of landscape architecture and the Emerald Necklace park system turns 200 in 2022-- and we're celebrating it at Jamaica Pond on April 26. The event will kickoff Olmsted’s bicentennial and honor his legacy values of shared use, shared health and shared power in parks and public space. This event is being presented by Olmsted Now, Emerald Necklace Conservancy, Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site (Fairsted) and Friends of Fairsted partner with Olmsted 2022 and Friends of Jamaica Pond. There will be treats, toasts and local legend Gerry Wright, founder of Olmsted 2022, portraying the man himself. Olmsted 2022 will recognize and spotlight awardees for their leadership in parks access and advocacy.