The only thing I love more than Spring in NYC – is New York Fashion Week. In 2010, Fashion Week was held under those famous white tents in Bryant Park one last time. It was a spectacular event with the usual designers, celebrities, models, and journalists lined up to celebrate the kind of wearable art that can only be found on a brightly lit runway. To commemorate this final season at the park, Vogue Editor Anna Wintour was quoted on a sign at the park entrance:
“Bryant Park became the beacon of what New York fashion stands for — an industry that’s fearless, tireless and always moving forward.”
But before Fashion Week made Bryant Park a world wide icon in the realm of couture, the park played a role in everything from the Revolutionary War, Civil War and even The Great Depression.
During one of the first battles of the Revolutionary War, The Battle of Long Island, George Washington’s troops raced across what is now Bryant Park. Later, the park was used as a Civil War encampment for Union Army Troops – and during the Great Depression the Reading Room (or Open Air Library) was established in the park to give “out-of-work businessmen and intellectuals a place to go where they did not need money, a valid address, a library card, or any identification to enjoy the reading materials”.
Today Bryant Park is bordered on one side by the main branch of the New York Public Library (famous for that scene in Ghostbusters where Dr. Venkman & Dr. Stantz are running down the steps guarded on each side by lions), and by Avenue of the America’s on the other side.
Even though New York Fashion Week will now call Lincoln Center home, various events such as concerts, plays, chess tournaments, Tai Chi & Yoga Classes, poetry nights, books signings and workshops are still held within Bryant Park. For upcoming events you can check out their monthly events calendar here: Bryant Park Events Calendar.