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Daily Plant Masthead

Volume XVI, Number 3304
Friday, Feb 16, 2001

PARKS REMEMBERS MAYOR BEAME

Historic Photo Op: After meeting with Parks officials, Mayor Abe Beame shakes hand with well wishers at the  entrance to Centra
Historic Photo Op: After meeting with Parks officials, Mayor Abe Beame shakes hand with well wishers at the entrance to Centra
Photo by Daniel McPartlin, courtesy of New York City Parks Photo Archive

Friday, February 9, 2001 Abraham D. Beame, Mayor of New York from 1974 to 1977, died at the age of 94. Mayor Beame presided over New York City in a time of intense fiscal crisis, during which he was credited with distributing the City's dwindling resources equitably. In an effort to compensate for what he called Mayor Lindsay's "Manhattanitis", he divided a $7 million appropriation for Central Park between all five boroughs. When the crisis hit in 1975, park rehabilitation projects were suspended and hundreds of Parks workers laid off.

Beame appointed four Parks Commissioners in his brief tenure. They were Edwin Weisl Jr. who served from January 1, 1974 to September 22, 1975; Alexander Wirin, September 23, 1975 to December 28, 1975; Martin Lang, January 1, 1976 to June 30, 1977; and Joseph (Plainsman) Davidson, July 2, 1977 to January 20, 1978. Each contended with dramatic budget cuts.

In those years Parks announced a restoration for Bethesda Fountain, a carousel dedication in Prospect Park, an equestrian path in Staten Island, a Forest Park Rail link, and hockey clinics in the Bronx. Sports and cultural programs continued under Beame's administration. They included hula hoop contests, square dancing and belly dancing classes, a performance by a balaika orchestra, sailboat regattas and kite flying days.

THIRTEEN YEARS AGO IN THE PLANT
(Friday February 26, 1988)

WHERE HAVE ALL THE FLOWERS COME FROM?

It's late February. Skaters are gliding at Parks rinks around town, their scarves waving in the wind. And flowers are in bloom at Pier 90 on Manhattan's west side. That's where the 1988 New York Flower Show, sponsored by the Horticultural Society of New York will be opening on Saturday, March 5.

QUOTATION FOR THE DAY

"When the burdens of the presidency seem unusually heavy, I always remind myself it could be worse. I could be a mayor."

Lyndon B. Johnson (1908-1973)

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