Honor Local Business in November

New York Originals

Promoting and celebrating local, small businesses in the neighborhood has always been a top priority for GVSHP.  Such establishments create a valuable and unique presence in our neighborhoods, vital to their character.  This November, we are offering three exciting lectures that will focus on historic local businesses in the Village.  Each event is distinct in its approach, but all share a similar regard for the importance of these one-of-a-kind businesses.

The first event, New York Originals- My Mom & Pop Greenwich Village, will take place on Monday, November 5.  Jamie McDonald will present segments from his Emmy Award winning PBS series New York Originals, which profiles classic small businesses in New York City.  He is also the author of a new book based on the series titled New York Originals – A Guide to the City’s Classic Shops & Mom-and-Pops, from which he will share specific examples of local businesses and their stories. Jamie will discuss the importance of these small shops to the identity of Greenwich Village and other neighborhoods and ways the public can help preserve these pieces of living New York City history.

The next two events take a more symbolic approach to highlighting the unique characters of local business.

On Monday, November 19, Thomas Rinaldi, author of the new book NEW YORK NEON, will present the history of neon signs throughout the city, with an emphasis on those in Greenwich Village. He will provide a historical and technical overview and discussion of the way popular sentiment toward the signs has evolved through the years.

Old neon signs often mark the locations of small businesses that have served as neighborhood anchors for generations. However, as the city’s urban landscape has transformed in recent decades, neighborhood institutions have vanished at an alarming rate, taking with them their historic signs. Happily, many signs can still be found around the city, some still in service more than eight decades after their installation.

L: New York Neon; R: Fading Ads of New York

The final event in the trio is Fading Ads of the Village, being held on Wednesday, November 28.  For nearly twenty years, Frank Jump has been documenting fading outdoor ads all over New York; signs that are still visible, but often overlooked. Disappearing from the sides of buildings or hidden by new construction, these signs are remnants of lost eras of New York’s life. This photo-documentary is also a study of time and space, of mortality and living, as Jump’s campaign to capture the ads mirrors his own struggle with HIV. During this presentation, focusing on the fading ads of the Village, you will see many images captured on vintage Kodachrome film. Explore the meanings they carry through acclaimed photographer and urban documentarian Frank Jump’s lens.

For more information on these events and to RSVP to attend, visit GVSHP’s Events Page.

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Dana was GVSHP's Programs and Administrative Associate from 2010 to 2013.

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