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Village Awards – Recognizing the Places That Make Our Neighborhoods Special

2023 Awards Nominations are Now Open!


Each year, Village Preservation honors invaluable local leaders, institutions, business, places and organizations at its Annual Meeting and Village Awards. This fun and free public event highlights and celebrates those that make our neighborhoods some of the most interesting and exceptional in the city. Nominations are now open until March 31st to submit your nominations for awardees. The night also includes a review of Village Preservation’s activities and accomplishments over the last year. So save the date: the cherished annual event will be held at The Great Hall at The Cooper Union on Tuesday, June 13th at 6:00pm.

As we celebrate the culture and community of Greenwich Village, the East Village, and NoHo, Village Preservation encourages residents and visitors to take a few moments to fill out the simple form below to nominate your favorites for a 2023 Village Award. Note that because of the number of nominations we receive, most are not chosen the first year they are nominated, and not being selected one year doesn’t mean it won’t be the next — so keep nominating!

Just provide basic information such as the name of the nominee, contact information, and why this nominee deserves a Village Award. You can also submit a photo or pdf along with the nomination.

If you need some inspiration, here are some of our amazing past awardees:

La Mama: 2014 Annual Award Winner

In 2014 La MaMa won a Village Award for fifty-three years (at the time) of bringing amazing Off-Off-Broadway theater to the East Village. La MaMa’s rich history is illuminated in these posts from our blog;

In 1961, Ellen Steward founded La MaMa. She was hoping to provide rehearsal and performance space for her foster brother and leased space at 321 East Ninth Street. She housed her clothing boutique on the first floor and the basement was used for the theater. Ellen was told that obtaining a coffeehouse license was easier than a theater liscence, and Café La MaMa was born. In the beginning there was cake and coffee sold during performances and a hat was passed for the performers.

View of patrons at the Cafe La Mama Experimental Theatre Club, New York, New York, November 20, 1965. (Photo by Fred W. McDarrah/Getty Images)

On February 9, 2023, La MaMa celebrated the ribbon cutting for its successful renovation and reopening of its space at 74 East Fourth Street. The organization’s website recounts that when Ellen Stewart purchased that building, it had no roof, flooring or back wall. But, it says:

“She founded La MaMa with the belief that space is vital to the creative process and art can be a powerful vehicle for communities to come together. That belief is at the heart of La MaMa’s mission.”

This past Village Award winner continues to thrive in the East Village. After saving the building from demolition decades ago, La MaMa is now a New York City landmark of both the cultural and architectural sort.

Westbeth Artists’ Housing: 2010 Regina Kellerman Award Winner

In 2010, Westbeth Artists’ Housing received the Regina Kellerman Village Award. The next year the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) voted unanimously to landmark Westbeth. This followed through on a promise made seven years before to the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation (GVSHP) and other community groups working to extend landmark protections in the Far West Village.

We recently held a panel and viewing of Westbeth’s Gallery’s Winter Show, belatedly celebrating Westbeth Artists Housing’s 50th anniversary. At the show, Westbeth presents a selection of remarkable new work created by over 75 emerging and established Westbeth artists. On the evening of Thursday, December 8th, 2022, Village Preservation and our community gathered to visit the exhibition and hear from a panel of artists from Westbeth to discuss this iconic Greenwich Village institution, its history, the importance of its preservation, and the work of artists in this unique space.

Dig into Westbeth Housing’s history with a number of past blog posts that share how richly this place contributes to our neighborhoods.

Throughout March we’ll be highlighting past award winners to help get you inspired to nominate one of your own favorite places, people, or institutions for a 2023 Village Awards.

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