Ziplining, Art, Goats, Live Music and More: What’s New on GI This Weekend


We’ve had a lovely spring on Governors Island thus far, but Memorial Day Weekend is when the fun really starts to pick up. From ziplining, adventure playgrounds and goat petting to free live music and new arts exhibitions, we’ve got something for everyone. Check out our guide to what’s new this weekend!


Adventures @GI Opening Saturday, May 27. Open 10AM-6PM weekends, 10AM-5PM weekdays.

Adventures at Governors Island is NYC’s new premier destination for recreational entertainment located on the shore of beautiful Governors Island featuring 3 world class attractions; Flywire Zip Line, 3D Climbing Challenge, and the Amazen’ Maze.

Flywire Zip Line – Channel your inner superhero and soar to freedom on the most anticipated zip line in New York City. The Flywire Zip Line allows two people to zip down our 300 feet long cable side by side and hit up to 21 mph. The aerial attraction has a 35 foot peak at its starting point, high enough to deliver a sensational ride for the experienced thrill seeker but also able to accommodate beginner adventure seekers. Perhaps best of all, the ride experience will offer sensational views of the Statue of Liberty and downtown Manhattan. Please note you must be at least 40 inches tall and 45 lbs to ride and must be less than 250 lbs. Safety harnesses must be worn. $12 or 2 tries for $20.

Amazen’ Maze - The kid in all of us is brought to life in this exciting adventure that is pure family fun. A giant maze nearly 3,600 square feet will challenge your sense of direction and problem solving skills. Families can compete with each other or with other families. It is not just about wandering around inside looking for the exit. Kids and adults sharpen their navigation skills. Maze runners must locate four checkpoints, each with a letter they punch on their passport. The object is to spell the word “MAZE” then exit as quickly as possible. $8.

Climbing Challenge - Gone are the days where rock climbing is for only the tried and tested. Participants can jump into the Climbing Challenge with any skill level. Scale your choice of 3 unique 25 foot walls that fit your ability. With a self-guiding belay system, each climber can choose their line and begin at their own pace. The wall challenge is fun for all ages. Please note climbers must weigh at least 40 lbs. and must be less than 250 lbs. to participate. Safety harness must be worn. $6.

Earth Matter Compost Learning Center, opening Saturday, May 27, open to the public weekends, 12-4PM, Urban Farm

Earth Matter NY’s Center on Governors Island showcases numerous devices and methods for making compost and caring for the 60 animals living in the Urban Farm, including goats and chickens (+50,000 if you count worms and bees)! Earth Matter composts yard waste from Governors Island, 28,000 pounds of on-Island food scraps and NYC green markets each month. The public is welcome to learn about composting through activities and animal care workshops with the goats and chickens weekends on Governors Island.

GrowNYC Teaching Garden opening Saturday, May 27, open to the public weekends 12PM-4PM, Urban Farm

GrowNYC’s Teaching Garden is a 21,000 square foot urban farm that aims to excite and educate its visitors in all aspects of urban farming and environmental sustainability. The garden features over 65 vegetable beds, a ¼ acre small scale vegetable farm, an aquaponics system, an outdoor kitchen, a large solar oven, fruit trees, a rain garden and much more. Visitors can take a tour of the space or drop in on a rotation of programming offering garden activities, scavenger hunts and cooking demonstrations.…

CMA Free Arts Island Outpost, opening Saturday, May 27, open to the public weekends 10AM-5PM, Nolan Park House 14

Visit Children’s Museum of the Arts’ Free Arts Island Outpost on Governors Island every Saturday & Sunday this summer for free hands-on art making workshops and art-viewing experiences! The open outdoor space of the Free Arts Island Outpost beckons you to come collaboratively create! Young artists will be inspired and challenged to explore big projects utilizing found objects and traditional mediums.

play:groundNYC, open to the public weekends 11AM-4PM, Barry Road (near South Battery)

play:groundNYC operates a 50,000 square foot junkyard playground on Governors Island. The playground is free and open to the public every weekend. Trained staff provides materials and supervision so that young adventurers may have the chance to work with tools and building materials and explore physical, social and emotional problem solving. With the provided support, space and materials, young people can take control, construct, create and establish their own agendas.

Ongoing Exhibitions

Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Arts Center on Governors Island, Opening Weekend Saturday, May 27-Monday, May 29, 12PM-5PM, Building 110

LMCC’s Arts Center at Governors Island opens Memorial Day weekend with three FREE, art-filled days including the opening of LMCC’s 2017 summer exhibition, A Supple Perimeter by Kameelah Janan Rasheed. In A Supple Perimeter, Rasheed begins with her research into ecology, entropy, and black traditions of experimental writing to construct an immersive ecosystem of texts, videos, projections, objects, and sound experiments that comment on selective legibility and the tension between public and private selves.

The weekend will also include Open Studios with Process Space Artists-in-Residence. Over the course of two days, audiences can roam this historic converted warehouse and experience a wide range of artwork, from live performance and theater to painting and sculpture to fiction and poetry. See the full list of participating artists below.

Finally, there will be four Open Rehearsals with some of LMCC’s Extended Life Artists-in-Residence including Cori Olinghouse, Marjani Forté-Saunders, Jillian Peña, and Wally Cardona and Jennifer Lacey.

Writing on It All, Opens May 27 & will be open weekends & Tuesdays May 27-June 25, 1PM-4PM, Nolan Park House 11

Writing On It All is a participatory writing project open to all interested members of the public. In sessions led by artists and writers, participants are invited to write on the interior surfaces of an out-of-use house – and no two sessions are alike. Facilitators and session members take to the walls to write, attending to the dynamics of writing as well as to pressing issues of the day.

Art of Intuitive Photography, open weekends 11AM-5PM, Nolan Park House 8A

Visit Art of Intuitive Photography’s juried show with the theme of intuitive photography. A mix of teen and adult students as well as photo teachers will showcase images captured in an intuitive moment. Smartphone and Intuitive Photography classes will be offered at the house on selected afternoons.

Billion Oyster Project Exhibit, open weekends 11AM-5PM, Nolan Park House 16

Be a Harbor Steward! Come learn about the Billion Oyster Project & New York Harbor School’s efforts to restore NY Harbor. Dive into our estuary and enjoy interactive activites, build your own oyster reef and find out how you can be a part of oyster restoration efforts in your neighborhood!

Special Events

Rite of Summer – Talujon Percussion Presents “Dark Full Ride”, Saturday, May 27, Performances at 1PM and 3PM, Colonels Row, FREE

Entering its 7th season on Governors Island, Rite of Summer is a classical contemporary music festival run by NYC pianists Pam Goldberg and Blair McMillan. Rite of Summer showcases the country’s finest artists with an emphasis on the cutting edge. Memorial Day weekend, will feature Talujon Percussion. Over the past 25 years, Talujon has commissioned dozens of new works for percussion including quartets by Alvin Lucier, Henry Threadgill, Ralph Shapey, Wayne Peterson, Julia Wolfe, Ushio Torikai, Louis Karchin, and Eric Moe. The group has collaborated with composers and institutions including Steve Reich, James Tenney, The Brooklyn Philharmonic, Meredith Monk, and Tan Dun at venues such as Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Merkin Concert Hall, Symphony Space, and Roulette as well as universities and concert halls throughout the US, and at such festivals as Taipei’s Lantern Festival, BAM’s Next Wave Festival, Muzik3 Festival, Chautauqua, Festival of New American Music. Talujon maintains an active touring schedule including master classes/workshops at institutions such as the Juilliard School, Stanford University, University of Virginia, SUNY Buffalo, Harvard University, and the University of Oregon.

Family Fun Day, Sunday, May 28, 11AM-4PM, Nolan Park, FREE

Kick off an exciting summer on Governors Island! Family Fun Day celebrates the season’s opening and the Island’s playful nature and free-range attitude. All performances and activities are family-friendly and FREE to the public.

Improvise with Story Pirates, be amazed and inspired by Mario the Magician and his inventions, show off your mad dance moves to Grammy-winning Tim Kubart and the Space Cadets, march with Shinbone Alley Stilt Band, and goof around with Loony Toony the Clown!