Washington Square Park

New York, NY 10012, USA

Washington Square Park is only a fraction of the size of Central Park, but it is as almost as much of an icon of New York as its much larger counterpart uptown. It’s likely because it sits in the heart of Greenwich Village, and has thus served as a backdrop for many events in the city’s history. In the late 19th century, it was one of New York’s most fashionable addresses (that period was captured by Henry James in his 1880 novella Washington Square, later the basis for The Heiress, a play that was also adapted into a movie). The arch along its northern side dates to 1892 and was designed by Stanford White to replace an earlier one, in wood and plaster, erected in 1889 to mark the centennial of George Washington’s inauguration. When Greenwich Village became the haunt of artists and writers, the park was a green space for the city’s counterculture; folk singers and street performers are still a common sight, and the park is also frequently used for political protests and rallies. On sunny days, especially during the academic year, the park is filled with NYU students, neighborhood residents, and tourists taking in the scene.

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Listen to Live Music in Washington Square Park

No matter when you visit Washington Square Park, and especially in the spring and summer months, live musicians and performers are there to entertain. Location-wise, the park couldn’t be in a better spot. Surrounded by the New York University (NYU) campus, many of Manhattan’s most popular neighborhoods, like Soho, the West Village and the East Village, are within walking distance. Usually the street musicians and performers hover in the center of the park, close to the fountain, but the surrounding green spaces and gardens are often much quieter and ideal for afternoon reading. If you can’t swing by during the day, that’s perfectly fine. The park is just as pretty by night.

Are We There Yet: Under the Arch

Once a week, every week, I get to leave my classroom after a long day of work and walk under the Arch at the entrance of Wash. Sq. Park. Something about it feels triumphant, maybe it is because its thursday night at 9pm and my week is ending or maybe it is because feeling a sense of beauty in NYC can be so tough to find.

Spring in New York

This was one of the first warm days of spring- everybody was out and about.

Frozen Gotham

New York City is very pretty in the snow; at least just as it falls. It can get very slushy and grey after the snow has been on the ground for a while but if you catch the city right after a big dump, you’ll love it... as long as you have good winter boots. This photo was taken in Washington Square Park.

Bringing India To The World

If you are in NYC during the summer months take a moment to check what Washington Square is preparing for you! In this occasion it was welcoming India but you never know what is up its sleeve! Street shows and performances are a tradition at this landmark. Plus, it is a great place to take a break from the intense heat thanks to the natural cover offered by the many trees that surround the park.

Christmas in New York: 3 Great Photo Op Spots

One of my favorite New York holiday shots is of the Christmas tree under the Washington Square Park Arch. Go on Christmas Eve if you want to catch the Christmas caroling. It would make for a wonderful video card to send to friends and family from New York. Another great place to take holiday shots is the 150-foot atrium in the Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle. There is something magical about the twelve 14-foot stars that hang from the ceiling and change color from orange to red, blue, purple, and numerous multicolor combinations. You can snap different color selfies and even get the Columbus statue and Central Park in the frame. Best of all, you don’t have to freeze while doing so. If you have the time, grab a seat at the piano bar on the third level and enjoy the light show. Macy’s holiday window display always draws crowds. You can get some very interesting shots with the reflection of the surrounding buildings in the glass. I nearly had to kneel to get the top of the Empire State Building reflected in the window display with its replica.

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