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Calendar of Events



OutdoorFest Adventures Day, Saturday, May 30, Colonels Row
OutdoorFest is bringing FREE outdoor adventure to Governors Island. We’ll start the day with yoga followed by outdoor fitness classes, field day games and wilderness skills demos. OutdoorFest is a 10-day outdoor adventure festival from May 29 - June 7th 2015 in all five boroughs of NYC. Schedule for full day of events:

Rite of Summer presents John Brancy and Peter Dugan, Saturday, May 30, 1 PM and 3 PM, Nolan Park
Baritone John Brancy (First prize winner of the 2013 Marilyn Home Song Competition and pianist Peter Dugan present an afternoon of vocal music by Gershwsin, Dvorak, Bernstein, Chopin and the Beatles. For more information visit

FIGMENT NYC, Saturday, June 6 and Sunday, June 7, Island-wide, 10 AM  to 6 PM
FIGMENT is a free, inclusive, participatory arts event held in multiple cities and drawing tens of thousands of participants each year. At FIGMENT visitors will find works in every imaginable medium including sculpture, installation, performance, music, workshops, games, social experiments, and heart-stopping technological innovations that change the way we see the world… and visitors are invited to bring something, too! 

Jazz Age Lawn Party, Colonels Row, Saturday and Sunday, June 13 and 14 and Saturday and Sunday, August 15 and 16, 11 AM to 5 PM
The 10th Annual Jazz Age Lawn Party will take place twice this season. This beloved summer event attracts thousands of fans each weekend, who come together to discover authentic music from the 1920s and 1930s, learn the hottest dance steps of the time, frolic in their flapper dresses and glad rags and enjoy sophisticated bites and vintage-inspired cocktails in a romantic yet playful setting. For more information, visit:

PEN presents Worker Writers’ School: Summer Semester, Saturday, June 13 and Sunday, June 14
Features poetry workshops, political dialogues, pop-up bookstores, & proletarianization. Collaborators include the PEN American Center, Austrian cultural collective Urban Subjects, Domestic Workers United, Taxi Workers Alliance, Haitian Women for Haitian Refugees, & more.

Hedgepig Presents 15 Minute Hamlet, Saturday and Sunday, June 20-27, Lawn outside of Our Lady Star of the Sea, 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 PM
Hedgepig Ensemble Theatre presents The World's Fastest Hamlet. Join us for this 15 minute romp through one of Shakespeare's greatest plays June 20 & June 27. Performances will occur every hour on the hour from 11 AM-5 PM. #SpeedDateWithShakespeare #PigsDoItIn15orLess

Rite of Summer presents House of Waters, Saturday, June 20 1 PM and 3 PM, Nolan Park
This innovative three-person ensemble embraces the multi-layered sounds of the world, ignoring limiting definitions and restrictive genres. All virtuosos in their own right, with impressive credentials, the band consists of Max ZT (hammered dulcimer), Moto Fukushima (six-string electric bass), and Shane Shanahan (percussion). Their unique style is a product of intense collaboration between expert musicians who take risks, cross boundaries, and never cease to amaze. These are shape-shifting artists, whose love of music and its power is infectious. They are taking their instruments to places unimagined, and bringing their audience along with them. For more information, visit

River to River Festival, Thursday, June 18 - Sunday, June 29, LMCC’s Art Center on Governors Island
The annual arts festival of Lower Manhattan, River to River, has several performances on Governors Island scheduled this year. See the River to River events below.

Catherine Galasso’s Fall of the Rebel Angels: X, Friday June 26 at 1 PM, Saturday and Sunday June 27 and 28 at 5 PM, Building 19A in Nolan Park
Open rehearsals also offered May 23-June 25 Friday-Sunday Noon to 5 PM
Fall of the Rebel Angels: X is an evening-length interdisciplinary work for five performers loosely inspired by the Baroque painter Peter Paul Rubens. Using Rubens’ paintings as thematic scaffolding, the project investigates visceral physicality, sensuality and the spectacular. Begun in 2012, Fall of the Rebel Angels is an ongoing series of performance “studies,” with each chapter created for different casts and different sites. This approach mirrors Rubens’ own process: for every painting he would sketch several “studies” in pen and ink or charcoal. X is the tenth iteration of Fall of the Rebel Angels, and will combine content generated for previous studies with new scenes inspired by the Nolan Park former military housing units on Governors Island.

John Kelly’s Love of a Poet, Friday June 26 at 4 PM, Saturday and Sunday June 27 and 28 at 2 PM, Lower Level of Building 110
Open rehearsal offered June 25 at 4 PM
John Kelly’s Love of a Poet received accolades and an Obie Award for its premiere in 1990 at Lower Manhattan’s Battery Maritime Building, the current terminal for ferries to and from Governors Island. For River To River 2015 Kelly is re-constructing the work for the Arts Center at Governors Island. The site-specific work incorporates Robert Schumann’s 1840 Dichterliebe song cycle, sung by Kelly in the countertenor register, and includes the original black-and-white 16mm film sequences by Anthony Chase as well as a completely new set/installation by artist Jarrod Beck.

Emmanuelle Huynh-Company Mua Cribles/Wild Governors, Friday June 26 at 3 PM, Saturday and Sunday June 27 and 28 at 3:30 PM, Parade Ground
Cribles/Wild, originally premiered outdoors in 2010, is a “May Pole” dance with ten local choreographed dancers exploring the round—a simple, archaic form that so often serves as a vehicle for celebrations, rites and rituals. Performed to Iannis Xenakis’ Persephassa for six percussionists, the piece makes powerful use of the composers’ spatial architectures and ultimately wonders whether we can see music and hear dance.

Open Studios with Process Space Artists in Residence, Saturday, June 27, 1 PM – 3 PM, LMCC Arts Center at Governors Island in Building 110
Join LMCC and River To River for Open Studios with Process Space artists-in-residence at Governors Island. Visit with visual and performing artists and writers who have been working in the Arts Center at Governors Island since March. The weekend will feature behind-the-scenes access to 20 multi-disciplinary artists’ studios.

Open Studios Discussion with Eiko and Emmanuelle Huynh, with Process Space Artists in Residence, Sunday, June 28, 1 PM, LMCC Arts Center at Governors Island in Building 110
A discussion between two internationally lauded choreographers in anticipation of their upcoming collaboration. Eiko and Emmanuelle may discuss individuals who have influenced their work, their respective current challenges and inspirations and identities as Vietnamese/French and Japanese/American women, as well as their personal transformations and approaches to performing, choreographing, and teaching dance.

Open Studios Discussion with Wally Cardona, Sunday, June 28, 1 PM, LMCC Arts Center at Governors Island in Building 110
A discussion exploring how Cardona and Bepler’s creative processes and motivations led to the protocols used in the cross-cultural installments of The Set Up and how both hold space for the ambiguities and discoveries inherent in working with differing cultural imprints and placements. As an independent researcher, Yamauchi is participating in the process of “discussing/doing/dancing” and examining how the The Set Up and its creators are “undoing tendencies toward certainty in art.”

RECESS Badminton, Saturday, June 20, Colonels Row, 12 PM to 5 PM
Dust off those badminton rackets and birdies as RECESS returns to Colonel's Row for their infamous outdoor badminton challenge featuring 32 creative organizations battling for the title of New York City's supreme shuttle cockers! Festivities include guest deejays, food vendors and a beer/wine tent. Plus a few public courts. Visit for more information.

Rite of Summer presents Don Byron New Gospel Quintet, Saturday, July 11, 1 PM and 3 PM, Nolan Park
The Don Byron New Gospel Quintet was launched in the spring of 2009 and had its world premiere at the Jazz Standard in New York. The band has since then toured in Europe and the US and been received enthusiastically by audiences and critics alike. For more information, visit

New York Transit Museum Vintage Bus Bash! Saturday July 11 and Sunday July 12
The New York Transit Museum's fleet of vintage buses heads to Governors Island for a summer weekend! Iconic "fishbowl" style windshields, a two-tone green color scheme, Jackie Gleason's famed bus driver appearance in The Honeymooners, and the first air-conditioned bus in the country transport visitors back to the 1940s and 1950s. For more information visit

Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance presents The City of Water Day Festival, Saturday, July 18, 10 AM to 4 PM
A day of entertainment, education and adventure celebrating our waterfront and its potential. Enjoy free boat tours, children's activities, fishing, the Waterfront Activity Fair, and more! For more information, visit

Come Out & Play Field Day and Family Day at the Parade Ground, Saturday, July 18, 11 AM to 5 PM
Come Out & Play is a free festival for players of all ages.  Each year Field Day showcases spectacular new field games & sports for adults to play.  Family Day provides a day of field games for the whole family to play together.  For more information, visit

It’s Your Tern Festival, Sunday, July 19, Yankee Pier
Come celebrate Governors Island’s treasures: Common terns and oysters! Common terns have recently colonized several decommissioned piers on the Governors Island waterfront; in 2013, researchers from NYC Audubon and Cornell University counted 181 nests and banded 100 chicks. The Tern Festival will take place from noon until 4pm and will feature speakers, a bird tour of Governors Island, a botany and natural history tour of the Island, a common tern viewing station, and short guided boat trips to view the nesting terns from the water.

Make Music New York’s Porch Stomp, Sunday, June 21, Island Wide, 1 PM -5 PM
Come on down to Governors Island and holler up a storm at the second annual MMNY Porch Stomp! With over 30 performances, jams and workshops by artists ranging from bluegrass and old-time to folk and roots, this is a hootenanny you won’t want to miss. For more information, visit

New York City Poetry Festival, Saturday and Sunday, July 26 and 27, 11 AM to 5:30 PM
The Poetry Society of New York will once again invite New Yorkers to come together for this two day festival to celebrate NYC’s vibrant poetry community. The event will include over 60 poetry organizations and 250 poets on its three stages; a Vendor’s Village where local booksellers, artists and craft makers will sell their wares; a beer garden sponsored by Brooklyn Brewery; healthy and delicious food options; poetic installation art throughout, the Ring of Daisies open mic; and last but not least, the Children’s Poetry Festival, complete with writing games and its own fourth, all-kids stage.  

Open Studios with Juliana May, Tuesday, July 31, LMCC Arts Center at Governors Island in Building 110
See behind the scenes of choreographer Juliana May’s process.

Open Studios with Will Rawls, Tuesday, July 31,  LMCC Arts Center at Governors Island in Building 110
See behind the scenes of choreographer Will Rawl’s process.

The Plantation, Saturday, August 16, Commanding Officer’s House 3 PM
A free site-specific staged reading of The Plantation, a new adaptation of Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard, set during Reconstruction, Virginia 1870, and staged on Governor's Island by adaptor/director Claire Beckman on the 150th anniversary of the end of The Civil War, and the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights movement. 

RECESS Bocce, Colonels Row, Saturday, August 22, 12 PM to 5 PM
Itchy for bocce anyone? Join RECESS for a day of outdoor fun in the sun as 32 creative organizations put their lawn skills to the test, rolling and knocking off each other's bocce balls on the makeshift grass courts on Colonel's Row. Festivities include guest deejays, food vendors and a beer/wine tent. Plus a few public courts. Visit for more information.

NYC Unicycle Festival, Saturday and Sunday, September 5 and 6, 12 PM
NYC's Unicycle Festival rolls across New York City this September. Activities include races, competitions, exhibitions, and a variety of unicycle sports including basketball, hockey and sumo. For fans of extreme riding, the Hell on Wheel trials course challenges riders throughout the day. World-famous riders display their skills, and members of the public have the opportunity to try one-wheel riding. DJ Sky King keeps the one-wheel tempo rocking. The NYC Unicycle Festival is a Bindlestiff Family Variety Arts, Inc. production. For more info:

Open Studios with Kyle Decamp, LMCC Arts Center at Governors Island in Building 110, Saturday and Sunday September 26 and 27, Noon to 5 PM 
See behind the scenes of choreographer Kyle DeCamp’s process.

Open Studios with Artists in Residence, LMCC Arts Center at Governors Island in Building 110, Saturday and Sunday September 26 and 27, Noon to 5 PM 
Join LMCC for Open Studios with Process Space artists-in-residence at Governors Island. Visit with visual and performing artists and writers who have been working in the Arts Center at Governors Island since August. The weekend will feature behind-the-scenes access to 20 multi-disciplinary artists’ studios.


Castle Williams and Fort Jay will be open daily all season. Times and programs will vary during the season. For more information visit

The following programs to June 12

Explore Castle Williams Daily. Courtyard open 10 AM until 4:30 PM.  Tours every hour from 11:30 AM till 3:30 PM. About 30 minutes. Get some history in the round at the best-preserved circular fortification in the nation. On weekends the Castle is open until 5:30 PM with an additional tour at 4:30 PM.

Experience Fort Jay: An Island Star! Courtyard open daily 10 AM until 4:00 PM.  Weekends tours every hour from 11:30 AM till 3:30 PM. About 30 minutes, meet at the Fort Jay bridge. Fortify your mind! Tour one of the best examples of classic star-shaped fort design anywhere in the country, including the oldest structure on the island.

Hike through History: Weekends. 2:30 PM at Soissons Dock. About 90 minutes. See the whole history of the island in one go. Our most comprehensive program takes you to nearly every highlight in the historic district. No tickets or reservations required. Visitors should be prepared to stand for a full 90 minutes and walk a distance of about 1.5 miles.

More programs to come including Kid's programs, special topics such as "Civil War Baseball," and Civil War Artillery.


Free Bike Mornings: May 25-September 25 (Every weekday)
Borrow a bike for free for up to one hour from Blazing Saddles on Colonels Row. Free bikes are offered every weekday morning from 10 AM to noon.

What’s Happening on Governors Island: May 23-September 27 (Every day), Building 110
Visit the interactive exhibit in Building 110 to learn more about Governors Island’s new park and public spaces and The Hills as they are under construction. Visitors are invited to use Post It™ notes, markers and stamps to provide their feedback about what’s happening on the Island. 

Billion Oyster Project, May 23-July 19, 11 AM – 4 PM, Building 20A in Nolan Park
Indoor program/exhibit complete with restoration equipment, demo oyster tank, video, live feed of oyster reef, written materials, harbor school student interns leading programs supervised by New York Harbor School staff. Will offer tours of: MAST Center, Earth Matter shell recycling, Oyster Nursery/Reef and volunteer days.

The Art of Intuitive Photography’s 3rd Annual Gallery Show, Fridays Saturdays and Sundays, May 23-July 19, Building 16 in Nolan Park
See Student and Teachers work this summer in Governors Island. These photos of student and teacher’s work are the winners of a selection judged by the teachers and showcase images captured in an intuitive moment. Featuring Teachers: May 23-July 19, Children/Teens: June 13-June 21, Adults Part I: June 27-July 5, Adults Part II: July 11 - 19. For more information,

2015 New York Electronic Art Festival presented by Harvestworks, Everyday, May 23-July 20, Buildings 5 A & B in Nolan Park
The festival experimental works by local, national and international digital media artists and provides a public forum for the celebration and display of the most current technological art and discussion.

The Dysfunctional Theatre Company presents The Dysfunctional Collective, Saturdays and Sundays, May 23-September 27, Building 8B in Nolan Park, 12 PM – 5 PM 
A former officer’s home  is turned into a grab box of art, poetry, dance, theater and song.  Each week new works will be offered, usually with a focus on Governors Island or New York City as a whole.  Stop by to explore the house and see photos and artwork from local artists.  Have your picture snapped, hear a song, see a short play and explore the house with us.  For details on the specific programming each week, visit or stop by the house and pick up a program guide for more information.

(Counter)Public: Art, Intervention & Performance in Lower Manhattan from 1978-1993, LMCC’s Arts Center in Building 110, Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Holiday Mondays, May 23–September 27
The 1980s through the early 1990s represent a time of extremes—socially, politically and artistically. While not attempting to be a survey, (Counter)Public: Art, Intervention & Performance in Lower Manhattan from 1978–1990 presents a snapshot of a time and place where a diverse group of artists were simultaneously making work. The exhibition looks at artists’ varied—but invariably strong—responses to the overall political climate, the HIV/AIDS crisis, civil rights violations, the changing public sphere and the impact of newly pervasive media through public art, intervention and performance specifically in Lower Manhattan.

Earth Matter Compost Learning Center: Saturdays and Sundays, May 23-September 27,  12-4 PM, Fridays by pre-registration, Enter at the Park Oval
Earth matter hosts visitor open hours every Saturday and Sunday. The Center's schedule is: 12 - 1 pm- animals-in the-compost cycle and care for animals.  1- -1:30pm- instructional "how to" compost 2:00-2:30pm "featured" activity focus. 3-4 pm "what to compost". Come for a tour of our variety of composting methods and devices. Families welcome.  

GrowNYC's Teaching Garden, Saturdays and Sundays, May 23-September 27 Noon to 4, Enter at the Park Oval
GrowNYC’s Teaching Garden is an 8,000 sq ft urban farm that aims to engage, excite, and educate the public in all aspects of urban agriculture and green infrastructure through workshops and family appropriate activities. We have 30 vegetable and fruit beds made from recycled plastic lumber, an outdoor kitchen, a high tunnel, NYC's largest solar cooker, and more!

Children's Museum of the Arts Free Art Island Outpost Program: May 23-September 27 (Weekends, 11 AM to 3 PM), outside of Building 14, Nolan Park
Join CMA's Teaching Artists for free hands on art-making each weekend. Collaborate with other visitors on a variety of themed art workshops including painting, sound design, sculpture, animation, podcasting, and more!!  For more information visit .

Better Than Jam Handmade Gift Shop, May 23-September 27, Mondays, Fridays, Weekends, Building 410A in Colonels Row
The Brooklyn shop of all locally handmade products will be taking the ferry ride over, and bringing with it the creations of New York City's most talented designers, artists and crafters. The cute yellow house will be filled with the work of talented people, who have created some amazing and original products, just for the island shop. With the help of the Etsy New York Street Team, the shop will also host family-friendly demonstrations and workshops on Saturdays 2-4, to show and teach visitors some of their skills. For more information visit

Brooklyn Artery, Saturdays and Sundays, May 23-September 27, Nolan Park Building 1oB
Brooklyn ARTeryhas a gift shop featuring one-of-a-kind handmade merchandise and delicious snacks. DIY drop in classes for all ages, Saturdays 2-4pm. ARTery Gallery features a rotating exhibit of professional artists work upstairs and ARTery's talented Caracaturist Kenly Dillard will be on hand to draw your portrait in front of the shop! For more information, visit

Art Kibbutz, Sundays, 11 AM – 5:30 PM, May 26-September 10, Nolan Park Building 6B
Art Kibbutz, international Jewish artist community and residency program will host over 50 visual artists, writers, composers, and performance artists as part of an extraordinary summer of art making, exploration, and networking on Governors Island. Artists will focus on Shmita, the Sabbatical Year fostering a healthier environment and a more equitable and just society. For more information visit

FIGMENT NYC Summer Long Programs 2015, June 6-September 25
Below are FIGMENT NYC’s programs on the Island for the 2015 season:

  • Play on the Miniature golf course: Putt away at the 8th annual, artist-designed minigolf course! This year’s theme, “From Here to There”, captures transportation options from the past, present and future:
  • See the pavilions: In 2015, FIGMENT, the Emerging New York Architects Committee (ENYA) of the American Institute of Architects New York Chapter (AIANY), and the Structural Engineers Association of New York (SEAoNY) selected two winning designs in the 5th annual City of Dreams Pavilion Competition: Billion Oyster Pavilion by BanG Studio (NYC), and Organic Growth by Izaskun Chinchilla Architects (Madrid/London)

Rama Meditation Society’s Summer Meditation event, Saturdays and Sundays, June 6-July 12, Building 17 in Nolan Park, 10:30 AM -6:00 PM
The Rama Meditation Society is hosting a Summer Meditation event that includes meditation sessions, guest speakers and a fascinating exhibit about Meditation & the Brain.  If you ever wanted to learn more about meditation, this is a must!! Free materials! For more information, 

HERE, Saturdays and Sundays, Pershing Hall, July 21-September 27
Enjoy fresh and adventurous hybrid works in progress by HERE’s resident artists from all disciplines – theater, music, dance, puppetry and media art. And get a first look at two works premiering this fall, Chang(e) and Genet Porno.

A.I.R exhibitions, Saturdays and Sundays in August and September, Building 5B in Nolan Park
In August, see new work from A.I.R. fellows in downstairs gallery then head upstairs to see more than 40 small pieces by other A.I.R. artists. This is the final venue of a year-long traveling show that has been shown in Nashville, San Francisco, Princeton and St. Louis. In September, the whole house will be devoted to an exhibition of work by the New York artists. Come by and see the art and take part in a program with UnderwaterNewYork ( and their "digital journal of writing, art and music inspired by real-life objects found in the waterways of New York City". Weekend discussions and programs relating to the harbor, the island and the related art installations are also planned. Bring children to the art table on the porch and enjoy outdoor workshops.

Sculptors Guild presents “Laws of Attraction”: May 23-September 27, Saturdays and Sundays and Holiday Mondays, Noon to 5 PM, Building 15 in Nolan Park
The Sculptors Guild presents this exhibition curated by Richard Timperio, Sideshow Gallery. This exhibition represents a broad range of innovative sculptural works responding to the theme of attraction. Free public programs offered throughout the summer.  for up to date event details.

The Holocenter’s Summer Museum: Saturdays and Sundays, May 23 –September 27, Building 19B in Nolan Park
Enjoy workshops, talks and tours to explore light, optics and holography. Exhibition and event information can be found at

Writing on It All: Saturdays and Sundays in June, Building 8A in Nolan Park, 1 PM – 6 PM
In their third year, Writing On It All hosts an exciting array of New York artists and writers, including Paul Ramirez Jonas, Shani Jamila, José Joaquín García, and more, as they lead a diverse public in a collaborative repurposing of a Governors Island house’s interior walls as a writing canvas. After each session, the house will remain open to the public. For more information, visit

New York Historical Society presents Revolution: NYC & the War for Independence, July 4-Septmeber 27, Building 18 in Nolan Park
This exhibition about the American Revolution and New York City is presented in conjunction with the arrival of the exact replica of General Lafayette’s 18th century ship, the Hermione, in New York Harbor.

The Makery’s Island Makeground, Saturdays and Sundays, July 21-September 20, Building 8A in Nolan Park
The Makery is a pop up makerspace for inventors of all ages.  From 3D modeling & printing to electronics, physical computing, engineering, art, and coding, The Makery offers experiences where communities can gather to play with the creative power of technology.  Returning to Governors Island for a second summer, The Makery will be transforming a historic house in Nolan Park into a digital playground with interactive exhibits and experiential events for the public to explore. For more info visit

MoveWorks presents ReArrange: Saturdays and Sundays, August 8-23, House 10A in Nolan Park 2 PM and 4 PM
An interactive site-specific dance performance for audiences of all ages. With dance, live music, and out-of-this-world costumes, a cast of kooky characters transform an ordinary house into a whimsical world of curiosities. This performance event is being produced by MoveWorks, a New York City based dance company driven by WILD imagination and lead by co-choreographers, Christian Serrano and Sarah Foster.  

4heads/Governors Island Art Fair
For more information,

Governors Island Art Fair, weekends in September, 11 AM – 6 PM
“Gems Among the Ruins”, says NY Times about the painting, photography, sculpture, installation, video and sound at Governors Island Art Fair - NYC’s largest independent exhibition. 4heads, a group of NY artists, awards exhibition space to 100 artists of exceptional talent for the 8th annual GIAF!