a bit about Governor's Island:
(info swiped from Wikipedia:)
Governors Island is a 172-acre island in Upper New York Bay, approximately one-half mile (1 km) from the southern tip of Manhattan Island and separated from Brooklyn by Buttermilk Channel. It is legally part of the borough of Manhattan in New York City.
From 1783 to 1966, the island was a United States Army post. From 1966 to 1996 the island served as a major United States Coast Guard installation. In 2001, the two historical fortifications and their surroundings became a National Monument. On January 31, 2003, control of most of the island was transferred to the State of New York for a symbolic $1, but 13% of the island (22 acres or 9 ha) was transferred to the United States Department of the Interior as the Governors Island National Monument, administered by the National Park Service.
Since the decision by the United States Coast Guard to vacate the 172-acre (0.70 km2) Island in 1995, the Governors Island Alliance has worked collaboratively and successfully to help secure its return to New York and to ensure that the public interest determine its reuse. The Alliance and its 50 member organizations led a campaign to see Governors Island returned back to New York for public purposes, a mandate embodied in GIPEC’s 2003 charter to create "an educational, recreational, and cultural center that will offer a broad range of public uses"
Since its transfer in 2003, Governors Island has been open to the public every summer. For the 2009 season the island is open to the public from May 30 to October 11 every Wednesday and Thursday for patrons of the free National Park Service walking tours of the island only, and Friday to Sunday for the general public. Visitors are invited to take a car-free bike ride, picnic, tour, enjoy outdoor art installations, and experience programs with the National Park Service. On Fridays, visitors can use a bike at no charge for an hour. 2009 events include large arts events such as the FIGMENT arts event, a major exhibition by Creative Time, the New Amsterdam festival, and Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance's City of Water Day.
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