Bard News & Events

Press Release


Emily Darrow
New York Restoration Project and Bard College's Center for Environmental Policy and Alumni/ae Office Sponsor the Cleanup at Fort Washington Park in Manhattan

ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.-Bard College students and alumni/ae will join with the New York Restoration Project, created by Bette Midler, at Fort Washington Park in New York City for Clean Up the World Day, on Saturday, September 18. Over forty million people in some one 120 countries, are expected to participate in the annual worldwide event which is in its seventh year and is held in conjunction with the United Nations Environment Program.

Bard's participation in the event is sponsored by the College's Center for Environmental Policy (CEP) and its Alumni/ae Affairs Office. Bard alumni/ae from New York City will meet students, faculty, staff, and fellow alumni/ae from the Mid Hudson Valley at Riverside Park, in Fort Washington Park off 158th Street for the cleanup. The volunteers will be focus their efforts on the waterfront area between 148th and 170th Streets; their work will include weeding, cleaning, planting, and carpentry. The day will conclude with a tree-planting ceremony.

"We at Bard share a beautiful site along the Hudson River and feel especially responsible for maintaining its integrity-upstream and especially downstream where it all comes together," says Joanne Fox-Przeworski, director of the CEP. "The alumni/ae, faculty, staff, and students will play a part in improving one of our most wonderful resources, the Hudson River and its shore." The Bard contingent will join volunteers, staff, and AmeriCorps members from the New York Restoration Project (NYRP), which was founded in 1995 by actress and singer Bette Midler.

The NYRP, Midler, and the Trust for Public Land provided funds last May to save 114 neighborhood gardens that were being auctioned by New York City to the highest bidder. The NYRP is currently involved in cleaning and restoring three of northern Manhattan's largest parks-Fort Tryon, Fort Washington, and Highbridge. "When I moved to New York, I was very disappointed by how parts of the city looked. I was so upset, I didn't sleep for weeks." said Midler in a recent Good Housekeeping article. "I love New Yorkers, and I'm like them-I'm noisy, I have my opinions, but I'm not used to the kind of carelessness and waste that I was seeing. People were throwing their garbage out the window, leaving their lunches on the ground. Finally, I realized I needed to actually do something-even if I had to pick up the stuff with my own two hands."

Bordering more than four miles of the Hudson and Harlem River waterfront, the precious resources of these three parks encompass more than 500 acres of forest, playgrounds, ball fields, and winding trails of historic park infrastructure. The NYRP project has reclaimed over 375 of these acres. Clean Up the World Day and the volunteers from Bard College, will help NYRP in its continuing effort effort.

The Center for Environmental Policy (CEP) at Bard College is sponsoring Clean Up the World Day as part of its commitment to make important environmental issues a part of daily life. Through education, research, and public service, the newly created CEP addresses local and global policy issues pertaining to the natural and built environments. At the core of CEP's activities is a two-year program leading to a master of science degree in environmental policy, beginning in the fall of 2001.

Donations in support of Clean Up the World Day have made by the following businesses: Williams Lumber and Home Centers, Hanson's Unlimited Silkscreen and Embroidery, and Chartwells Dining Service.

For further information about Clean Up the World Day call the Bard College Alumni/ae Affairs Office at 800-BARDCOL or e-mail

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This event was last updated on 03-02-2001