The End of Black Harlem | NY Times

Newcomers say gentrification is about wealth, not race. But that’s a distinction without a difference.
By MICHAEL HENRY ADAMS

Invisible Man: A Memorial to Ralph Ellison by Sculptor Elizabeth Catlett, 2003. Riverside Park at 150th Street, in Harlem. (Photo: Joseph Michael Lopez | NY Times)

Invisible Man: A Memorial to Ralph Ellison by Sculptor Elizabeth Catlett, 2003. Riverside Park at 150th Street, in Harlem. (Photo: Joseph Michael Lopez | NY Times)

I HAVE lived in Harlem for half my life — 30 years. I have seen it in all its complexities: a cultural nexus of black America, the landing place for Senegalese immigrants and Southern transplants, a home for people fleeing oppression and seeking opportunity. Harlem is the birthplace of so much poetry and music and beauty, but in the eyes of many who have never set foot here, it has long been a swamp of pain and suffering.

It is also changing, rapidly. A few years ago I was on Eighth Avenue, also known as Frederick Douglass Boulevard, picketing a fund-raiser for a politician who was pushing for denser mixed-use zoning along 125th Street, the “Main Street” of my sprawling neighborhood. Harlem has seen an influx of tourists, developers and stroller-pushing young families, described in the media as “urban pioneers,” attracted by city tax abatements. New high-end housing and hip restaurants have also played their part. So have various public improvements, like new landscaping and yoga studios. In general all this activity has helped spruce the place up. Not surprisingly, on that day a few passers-by shot us ugly looks, as if to say, “Why can’t you accept a good thing?”

But even then, a few boys passing by on their bikes understood what was at stake. As we chanted, “Save Harlem now!” one of them inquired, “Why are y’all yelling that?” We explained that the city was encouraging housing on the historic, retail-centered 125th Street, as well as taller buildings. Housing’s good, in theory, but because the median income in Harlem is less than $37,000 a year, many of these new apartments would be too expensive for those of us who already live here.

Hearing this, making a quick calculation, one boy in glasses shot back at his companions, “You see, I told you they didn’t plant those trees for us.”

Read more: The End of Black Harlem | NY Times

Related:

A Push to Preserve the Cultural Legacy of Harlem’s Sugar Hill | NY Times

Bracing for Gentrification in the South Bronx | NY Times

After 90 Years, a Harlem Church Vows to Endure Amid Relentless Change | NY Times

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Spread Love: Flux Art Fair

BY Led Black (@Led_Black)

IMG_8364

Okay – please heed my words. Please head over to Marcus Garvey Park right now to catch the Flux Public Art Project in that majestic park. Why the urgency? Well, you only have until May 31st to take in this next-generation art installation. Shout out to Flux Art Fair for bringing art to the people and enriching an already magnificent park. I cannot overstate how truly awesome this art project is so get there pronto. FLUX Public Art Projects is presented in collaboration with NYC Parks, NYC Department of Transportation’s Art Program and the Marcus Garvey Park Alliance.

For more: http://fluxfair.nyc/

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How Daveed Diggs of ‘Hamilton’ Spends His Sundays | NY Times

Sunday Routine
By HILARY HOWARD

Daveed Diggs, 34, with his dog, Soccer, in their neighborhood of Washington Heights. Mr. Diggs was nominated for a Tony Award for his portrayal of the Marquis de Lafayette and Thomas Jefferson in ‘Hamilton.’ (Photo: Nicole Craine | NY TImes)

Daveed Diggs, 34, with his dog, Soccer, in their neighborhood of Washington Heights. Mr. Diggs was nominated for a Tony Award for his portrayal of the Marquis de Lafayette and Thomas Jefferson in ‘Hamilton.’ (Photo: Nicole Craine | NY TImes)

Daveed Diggs is still getting to know the city. When the 34-year-old rapper and actor, who grew up in Oakland, Calif., moved here about two and a half years ago for a little show called “Hamilton,” he probably figured there would be plenty of time for exploring. He was wrong. Over the past month, however, thanks to a temporary change in the musical’s schedule, he has finally been able to enjoy the city’s Sunday brunch scene. Mr. Diggs, a Tony Award nominee for his portrayal of the Marquis de Lafayette and Thomas Jefferson, lives in Washington Heights with his girlfriend, the actress Jalene Goodwin, and their dog, Soccer, “a Westie with some other thing mixed into it.”

MORNING AFTER I wake up 11-ish, hopefully before noon. It depends on the night before. I go out on Saturday nights, dinner, drinks, and if I’m feeling young, dancing. I make the energy to go out. You can’t let the Broadway schedule run you.

Read more: How Daveed Diggs of ‘Hamilton’ Spends His Sundays – The New York Times

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#InstagramUptown – Dyckman World

A photo posted by SHANER (@nycstreetwalls) on

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Uptown Video: Name That Vaina

The Flama - Name That Vaina

Vaina is a word with multiple meanings, it can be used to indicate an object or anything in general.. Got it? Now it’s time to put your vaina knowledge to the test with the game show: NAME THAT VAINA!

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Indiegogo Spotlight: Urban Woodworking Project

Inwood Academy

Two students working with some ebony stain.

A Word From The Inwood Academy for Leadership

Inwood Academy for Leadership empowers students in Inwood and Washington Heights to become agents for change through community-focused leadership, character development and college preparedness.

Our population is drawn directly from the Washington Heights and Inwood community, where an average of 27% of children live below the federal poverty threshold. We advocated successfully in offering preference to English Language Learners (ELL) within our lottery, establishing an average of 41% “high needs” students (those having ELL status, an IEP, or both). We began our first school year in 2010 as a small group of eager teachers charged with the task of meeting the specific learning needs of our students.

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#InstagramUptown – Dyckman World
#InstagramUptown – Dyckman World

A photo posted by SHANER (@nycstreetwalls) on May 27, 2016 at 12:51am PDT We invite you to subscribe

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Juan Camilo Makes Sure Dyckman Beer Measures Up | NY Times
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The Elixir: The 2016 Dirty Dozen & Clean Fifteen List
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