St. John's Park

The Daily Plant : Tuesday, February 6, 2001


February 1 was the first day of Black History Month and the first day of celebration at Parks. The Ebony Society History Committee opened an art exhibit of quilts, crafts, photographs, and paintings by Parkies and recreation center visitors. The works, densely arranged and vibrantly colored, impress upon the viewer a feeling of intimacy. Many, like the quilts produced at the Roy Wilkins Center, express the spirit of community in which they were crafted. The Arsenal Gallery flourished in its given role as exhibit hall and meeting place when, at 5:30 p.m. guests climbed the stairs and poured out of the elevator to view Ebonacea, and enjoy an evening of interaction and performance.

The opening ceremony was a lively one. Jackie (Nightingale) Rowe-Adams, Center Manager at Morningside and Jackie Robinson and the Roy Wilkins Recreation Center Chorus led the crowd in song. The Jackie Robinson Steppers delighted dance fans. Reverend Victor Edmonds of Mt. Horeb Baptist Church; Commissioner Henry J. (StarQuest) Stern, Richard (Dad) S. Cox, SPMO and President of the Ebony Society; and Stephaine Harris all spoke.

The opening of Ebonacea was the first of a several events scheduled for Black History Month. Jackie Robinson Recreation Center will debut an exhibit of historical signs on February 8. Each sign, displayed in parks named for African Americans, describes the interweaving of African American and New York City history. February 10, Commissioner Stern will unveil an historical sign in Central Park at the site of Seneca Village, where African Americans lived and thrived in churches, schools, and privately owned homes before the park was built. The Ebony Society will hold their annual Light of the World Awards in the Arsenal Gallery on February 15. The awards are a chance for the society to recognize exceptional African-American Parkies. Ebonacea can be seen until February 23.

The Black History Committee members responsible for the exhibit are: Kathy (KitKat) Walker, Assistant WEP analyst; Patricia Gerald, Ying (Firesnake) Goodson, Deputy Center Manager at St John's Recreation Center; Jackie Rowe-Adams, Richard S. Cox, Lee (General) T. Henry, PRM; Patricia (Bradhurst) Kendly, Director of Operations Office; Stephanie (Road Runner) Lynch, Maxine Clark, Victor Edmonds, and Judy Poole, Operations and Reports. Brenda Lee, Gigi Vaughan, and Benny Brown installed the art. In mounting the exhibit, they continued a tradition begun by Elaine Jiggets in 1984. Thanks to them and to the Arsenal maintenance staff for a successful event. The exhibit is one of the Ebony Society's annual events. The Society, founded in 1985, draws African American Parkies into community with one another through parties, recognition, and charitable events. They count 192 Parkies as members. Past presidents, present at the opening, recalled the history of the Society. They are Walter (Caballero) Adams, Director of Health and Safety; John Pervis, Eddie Rudd, Norman (Cro-Magnon) Davis, Eddie Argo, and current president Richard S. Cox.

(Tuesday, February 9, 1988)


Fifth and sixth graders from Manhattan's River East Elementary School are now more familiar with basic ice rescue techniques and safety procedures after witnessing ice rescue demonstrations performed by the agency's Park Enforcement Patrol (PEP) and Urban Park Rangers yesterday at the Kerbs Boathouse adjacent to Conservatory Water (Model Boat Pond) at 72nd Street inside Central Park.

"The rescued demonstrated by our PEP officers and Rangers should only be attempted as a last resort," cautioned Commissioner Stern. "The Parks Department wants to emphasize first and foremost that those untrained in ice safety should call 911 before trying to rescue a victim at any of the 16 lakes and ponds on city parkland.


"Every great work of art has two faces, one toward its own time and one toward the future, toward eternity."

Daniel Barenboim (b. 1935)

Directions to St. John's Park

Know Before You Go

Recreation CentersSt. John’s Recreation Center

New York City’s recreation centers and indoor pools remain closed to the general public until further notice to provide COVID-19 related services as well as free childcare options for children who are scheduled for blended learning. To learn more or to apply for the childcare program, please visit the New York City Department of Education’s Learning Bridges program page.

Once we reopen, NYC Parks will extend all existing recreation center memberships to cover the length of time we are closed to the general public.

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