New York Junior League Completes 30th Annual Playground Improvement Project Revitalizing Seward Pak

NYJL Holds Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony Celebrating Longstanding Partnership with NYC Department of Parks and Recreation and Dedicating Tree in Honor of Michelle Go

Online PR News – 21-January-2023 – NY, NY – The New York Junior League (NYJL)’s Playground Improvement Project program completed its project revitalizing Seward Park and surrounding green spaces in partnership with the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation (NYC Parks). The ribbon-cutting ceremony was led by NYJL President Dayna Cassidy and attended by Manhattan Borough Parks Commissioner William Castro, President of Seward Park Conservancy Lauren Barack, surrounding residents, NYC Parks leaders, NYJL volunteers, the family of Michelle Go, and guests.

The 30th Annual Playground Improvement Project took place over six weekends in April and May 2022, with over 450 volunteers joining to paint, landscape, and restore the much-loved community spaces of Seward Park and neighborhood green sites, including Catherine Slip Malls, Cherry Clinton Playground, Coleman Playground, Hamilton Fish Park, Kimlau Square, Lillian D. Wald Playground, Little Flower Playground, Sara D. Roosevelt Park, and Sophie Irene Loeb Playground.

"This is the New York Junior League’s 30th year working hand-in-hand with the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation to create bright, vibrant and safe play spaces for our City’s children and families,” said Cassidy.

On April 30, 2022, Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, NYC Parks and Recreation Commissioner Susan Donoghue, and Manhattan Borough Parks Commissioner William Castro, volunteered in Seward Park alongside members of the NYJL Board of Directors and Management Council, and NYJL and community volunteers to plant a tree in memory of Michelle Go, commemorating her commitment to community and ten years of service with the NYJL.

"Michelle served in the community for over ten years with the New York Junior League,” said Cassidy. “We honored her life by planting a beautiful crepe myrtle tree – to commemorate her New York Junior League friendship and community service with us. This tree will serve as a living legacy – a gift which will grow stronger year over year and bring joy to all who visit Seward Park for years to come."

Home to the first permanent, municipally-built playground in the United States, Seward Park is situated between Chinatown and the Lower East Side and named for New York Governor and Secretary of State William Henry Seward. The park spans over three acres and features basketball and volleyball courts alongside jungle gyms and fountains for children to play. For the first time, the Playground Improvement Project team further expanded its efforts beyond the park by restoring neighborhood green spaces that have historically received limited investment due to their compact sizes, such as mini-parks, school playgrounds, and athletic courts.

About the New York Junior League
Since 1901, the New York Junior League (NYJL) has responded to New York City’s most pressing socioeconomic challenges. Powered by more than 2,200 women volunteers, the NYJL works with more than 60 community-based organizations to advance children’s social-emotional learning and to provide life skills programs to youth and adults who are navigating periods of difficult transition. Bringing their diverse experiences and talents, trained NYJL volunteers engage women and children in health, education, and arts workshops specially customized to their needs. The NYJL advocates with state and city government for women- and children-centered policies and develops volunteers’ leadership skills for service in the NYJL and on other nonprofit boards, all while cultivating a community that reinforces women’s personal relationships and collective power as drivers of positive change. The NYJL also responds to community partners’ requests for immediate support and invests funds and volunteers’ time in restoring public parks and community spaces to create welcoming environments conducive to fitness, health, recreation, and socialization.