Newsletter SIgn-Up Translate This Page Text Size: Sm Med Lg

Calendar of Events



Saturday, August 23, RECESS Bocce, Colonels Row, 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 free bike rides, food vendors, a beer/wine tent and guest deejays. A few courts will also be open to the public. Visit for more information.

Sunday, August 24, The NYC Volkswagen Traffic Jam, Colonels Row, 10 AM
The Traffic Jam is a spectator-judged vintage Volkswagen car show and picnic. With great views behind a vibrant line-up of nearly 100 Beetles, buses, dune buggies, Things, and other original VW's circa 1950's - 1970's, this car show is a one-of-a-kind event for both the casual spectator and classic VW enthusiast. Because show cars ride a ferry to get to the event, registration is mandatory to secure a spot at the show. Registration opens June 30th. Registration will be first-come, first-served. Car Registration $20.00 and spectators attend for free. Visit

Saturday and Sunday, August 30 and August 31, NYC Unicycle Festival, 12 PM
The New York City Unicycle Festival brings together recreational riders, world-class performers, mountain and off-road unicycle enthusiasts, mono-wheel vehicle inventors, along with circus enthusiasts, extreme sports viewers, and anyone seeking an unusual sight--even for NYC! You will witness unicycle basketball, hockey and sumo. Learn to unicycle in the learn-to-ride area. Produced by Bindlestiff Family Variety Arts. For more information visit

Saturday, September 6, Rite of Summer presents Grand Band, Colonels Row, 1 PM and 3 PM
New York's piano sextet Grand Band presents A Bigger Picture - performed by ROS Co-Founder & pianist Blair McMillen, Vicky Chow, David Friend, Paul Kerekes, Lisa Moore and Isabelle O'Connell. The New York Times calls Grand Band “the Traveling Wilburys of the city's new-music piano scene.” They will present a program of recent works by Philip Glass, Kate Moore, Steve Reich and two New York premieres by Michael Gordon and Paul Kerekes.

Sunday, September 7, African Film Festival’s Annual Family Day Celebration returns, 11AM to 5 PM, Colonels Row and Commanding Officers House
The sights and sounds of Africa are just a seven-minute ferry ride away! Come to this exceptional all-day celebration featuring FREE dance classes with world-renowned choreographers and master teachers from USA, Brazil, Senegal, and Guinea. There will also be FREE storytelling, double-dutch and quilting demonstrations and workshops. Short African films by emerging and veteran directors will be shown throughout the day. African food vendors will be on site. A wonderful treat for the entire family!



National Park staff and available and facilities are open 5 days a week, Wednesday - Sunday. On Mondays and Tuesdays, the national monument grounds are open and outdoor exhibits are available at Castle Williams and Dock 102.

Explore Castle Williams - Wednesday through Sunday. Courtyard open 10 AM till 5:30 PM. Tours on the half hour from 11:30 AM till 4:30 PM. About 30 minutes. Get some history in the round at the best-preserved circular fortification in the nation. The courtyard is open and tickets are required for rooftop tours (tickets are free).

Experience Fort Jay: An Island Star! - Wednesday though Sunday. On the half hour, 11:30 PM to 3:30 PM (last one is at 12:30 PM on Thursday). Starts at the front drawbridge entrance to Fort Jay. About 30 minutes. 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 - Wednesday through Sunday 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.

Ranger's Choice - Saturday and Sunday 1:30 PM. Meet at Soissons Dock for a 60 minute tour.



Envision the Dream Artworks by Seniors, Friday-Sunday, September 6 to 21, 10 AM to 6 PM, Building 10A in Nolan Park
Eleven senior artists will exhibit work in group and solo exhibitions in all media. Because the art world tends to focus on new and upcoming artists or established artists often mid-career senior artists find themselves overlooked by the mainstream media. This exhibition will draw attention and recognition to a diverse group of talented senior artists working in both traditional and non-traditional styles.

What's Happening on Governors Island: May 24-September 28 (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.

Empire Historic Arts Fund presents: "Tattered and Torn (On The Road To Deaccession): May 24-September 28, Building 20A in Nolan Park (Weekends), Building 20A in Nolan Park
An installation of costume de-accessioned from various museums due to condition issues that make them undesirable for exhibit in the upper echelon museum world. Empire Historic Arts believes their inherent beauty and value is easily recognizable and that they are a great resource for those interested in the design and construction of late 18th and 19th century garments.

Children's Museum of the Arts Free Art Island Outpost Program: May 24-September 28 (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

Earth Matter Compost Learning Center: Saturdays and Sundays, 12-4 PM, Fridays by pre-registration, Enter at the Park Oval
Earth Matter NY seeks to reduce the organic waste misdirected into the garbage stream by encouraging neighbor participation and leadership in composting. Visit the Compost Learning Center, located at the Urban Farm, to learn about composting or take a tour of their variety of composting methods and devices. Families welcome. The Center's schedule is: 12-1:00 pm: Animal Care (Meet lively animals and learn how they are part of the compost cycle!), 1:00-2:00 pm: Special Activity (These range from hands-on activities to special demonstrations), 2:00-3:00 pm: Help us make Daily Compost!

Sculptors Guild presents “Transformation”: May 24-September 28, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, 11 AM to 5 PM, Building 19 in Nolan Park
This exhibition encompasses six separately themed shows as well as outdoor work.

Brooklyn Public Library presents The Uni Project: May 24-August 30, Weekends 12 - 5 PM, Library Lawn outside of Building 114
For the second year in a row, the Uni Project will partner with the Brooklyn Public Library, Queens Library, and The New York Public Library to offer an open-air, public reading room on Governors Island. The Library Lawn will have shade and stunning views of New York Harbor. Visitors will be able to borrow books for use on the island, register for library cards, sign up for Summer Reading, and learn what's happening in the three New York City public library systems. BPL has also planned a series of Saturday programs at 1pm that include storytelling, performances, and music workshops.

The Poetry Society of New York presents The Typewriter Project: May 24-September 28, Historic District
The Typewriter Project is a series of site-specific literary installations which encourage users to go analog. The project's pilot vessel is New York City's tiniest writing den--just big enough for a seat, a desk, a typewriter, and you! The typewriter booth allows both seasoned scribes and first time typists to come inside and join in a citywide lyrical conversation. Every written entry will be collected, stored, and posted online for users to read, share, and comment upon. Look for the rustic, wooden booth situated on Governors Island with a commanding view of the Statue of Liberty.

Civil War & NYC, presented by the New-York Historical Society, Saturdays and Sundays, June 15-September 2, 10 AM to 6:30 PM, Building 18 in Nolan Park
The Civil War and New York City, is presented by the New-York Historical Society in commemoration of the sesquicentennial anniversary of the war that divided the nation. The exhibition portrays the complexities that arose in our city during the period of the American Civil War. While there were no battles in New York, the city itself embodied many of the tensions that tore the nation in two. Using photographs, newspapers, and works of art, our Student Historian Teen Leaders have curated a nuanced view of the Civil War showing multiple perspectives and many surprises.

Better Than Jam Handmade Gift Shop, May 24-September 28, Mondays, Fridays, Weekends, Building 16 in Nolan Park
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

Mu-Math: The Mobile Unit to Promote Mathematical Thinking, Saturdays, Sundays, Memorial Day and Labor Day, 1 PM to 6 PM, Building 20, Nolan Park
Mu-Math, the Mobile Unit to promote Mathematical Thinking, returns to Governors Island for its third year in a row. Featuring a dozen different mathematics investigations ranging from algebra to topology, the exhibit is appropriate for the math curious beginning with age 7 and ending with those who consider themselves "ageless." We'll be open Saturday, Sundays and holiday Mondays from 1 - 6 pm in Building 20, Nolan Park. You can read more about Mu-Math, as well as our weekday "Mu-Math Investigations" programs at

FIGMENT 2014 Summer-Long Installations, June 7-September 21, Every day, Parade Ground
This summer, FIGMENT's acclaimed interactive Sculpture Garden, artist-designed Minigolf Course and City of Dreams Pavilion, welcomes visitors to the Parade Ground to play with, dance around, contemplate on, and experience these wonderfully imaginative installations. This year's Minigolf Course is based on the theme "New New York City." For more information, visit

Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Presents LMCC's Arts Center at Governors Island, 11 AM-6 PM, Building 110
LMCC's Arts Center inspires visitors to the Island by connecting them to artists, new ideas and perspectives, and other art-lovers to demonstrate the role that artists play in creating vibrant, sustainable communities. Building 110, located on the Northern coast of Governors Island, is home to LMCC's Arts Center where key concepts and topics of the moment are explored, year round, in studios during artist residencies, and through curated gallery exhibits during the public access season for visitors to the Island.

Trisha Brown Dance Company Presents Embodied Practice and Site Specificity Gallery Exhibition, Fridays and Sundays 12 PM to 5 PM, Saturdays 10 AM to 5 PM and holiday Mondays 12 PM to 5 PM, LMCC's Arts Center at Governors Island
Embodied Practice and Site-Specificity looks closely at Trisha Brown's early work, collaborative practice and relationship to New York City, showing the transformative effect of her performances on audiences and her significant influence on a new generation of artists. The exhibition will also be open June 20-29: Monday-Friday 12-5pm, Saturdays 10am-5pm, Sundays 12-5pm for the River to River Festival.

LMCC's Open Studio with Aki Sasamoto and a canary torsi / Yanira Castro, Saturday, August 23, 1-5 PM in Building 110
For more information, visit LMCC.

Open Studio with Superhero Clubhouse, Saturday, September 20, 2PM
For more information, visit LMCC.

Open Studio Weekend, Friday, September 26-Sunday, September 28 in Building 110

Surprise House, August 16 - September 14, Building 7A
Imagine strolling through the green hills of Governors Island and coming to a stop before a mysterious house. What lies within? The Surprise House is designed by Surprise Industries, a company that uses the science of surprise to help individuals and organizations embrace the uncertain and engineer the unexpected. Guests will have an opportunity to play, connect, stretch their comfort zones, and get inspired to explore the unknown in everyday life.

Brooklyn Artery, All Season, Nolan Park Building 10B
Brooklyn ARTery offers one-of-a kind, affordable and fine quality handmade gifts from artisans from throughout the world. Stop by for beautiful handbags, jewelry, artisanal food, housewares, scarves, beauty products and more!  Each Saturday from 2-4pm they offer a free DIY arts drop-in class. Sundays from 2-4 stop by for delectable tastings of local artisanal cookies, candies and other sweet and savory snacks. Also announcing The ARTery Gallery, upstairs from the shop, featuring a rotating exhibit of professional artists. See links to their websites for sneak previews! or 347-425-7770

Third Rail Artist Residency, Open Studios, Outdoor Rehearsals, Performances and Workshops, select weekends and times, Building 17
Third Rail Projects invites the public to have a window into their creative process of their touring project Roadside Attraction, a mobile site-specific dance/theater work for 6 performers and a 1970's Coleman pop-up camper. Third Rail Projects will host open outdoor rehearsals, open studios, public workshops, and performances throughout the summer. Open studios on 6/6, 6/13, 6/20, 6/29, 12-5pm; Open Studios: 7/5, 8/2, 8/22, 9/13, 1-5pm; 9/16, 9/17, 10 - noon; Workshops: 7/23, 8/2, 1-5pm; Performances: 7/6, 2pm & 4pm; Invited Showing: 9/18 through 9/21, noon - 6pm. For more information visit

Spontaneous Interventions: Design Actions for the Common Good, May 31-September 28, Colonels Row Building 403
Spontaneous Interventions is an award-winning exhibition that celebrates innovative citizen-initiated actions to improve the public realm. The show originated as the official U.S. representation at the 13th International Architecture Exhibition at the Venice Biennale (2012). This summer S.I. takes up residency on Governors Island, presenting a condensed version of the original exhibition, an "outdoor living room" designed by the Rockwell Group, and free programs all summer. Visit for more information.

The International Center of Photography presents Capa in Color: July 3- September 28, Thursday-Sunday, Nolan Park Building 4
This summer at Governors Island, ICP presents a selection of photographs by Robert Capa from the exhibition Capa in Color. It also includes a preview of the upcoming ICP exhibition Sebastião Salgado: Genesis, opening September 19.

7th Annual Governors Island Art Fair, weekends in September, 11 AM to 6 PM
Indulge your curiosity by exploring the abandoned military barracks of Governors Island Art Fair, 100 rooms of painting, photography, sculpture, installation, video and sound art. Run by artists, for artists, New York's largest independent exhibition enters its 7th year this fall. Once again GIAF organizers, 4heads, have sifted through a sea of creative proposals from New York and around the world, giving 100 of the best a full room each, in which to wreak havoc as they see fit. Can't wait until September? 4heads' Artists in Residence keep their studio doors open all summer on the island. Get your culture fix on Governors Island - there's enough art here to start a new country.

ArtShare for HeartShare, Weekends in September, 11:30 AM to 5:30 PM
This exhibition showcases the talents and creative abilities of artists with intellectual and developmental disabilities, including autism spectrum disorders, cerebral palsy, epilepsy and neurological impairment.