Photograph by Ian Douglas, Courtesy of the Waterfront Alliance

Throughout the history of New York City, stretching as far back as to the time of the Native Americans, our waterways have been an integral part of life. From the Hudson and East rivers to the all important New York Harbor and all of the smaller bodies in between, the waters of New York have shaped culture and commerce, serving as natural resources and passageways to the rest of the country and the world, for centuries. On July 13th, the Waterfront Alliance along with other organizations throughout the five boroughs, will bring New Yorkers to, on and in the water for a variety of activities on City of Water Day, a day to celebrate our waterfront and champion a climate-resilient New York Harbor. Untapped Cities is proud to be a media sponsor of City of Water Day and will have a booth at the City of Water Day Festival, so come say hello!

Photograph by Ian Douglas, Courtesy of the Waterfront Alliance

Now in its 12th year, the day-long, harbor-wide festival will include free activities for all ages hosted by The Waterfront Alliance and this year’s festival partner The South Street Seaport, as well as nearly 100 local organizations throughout the five boroughs. Festival headquarters will be in the Seaport District, Piers 16 and 17, in Lower Manhattan, with dozens of In Your Neighborhood events offering access to some of the New York–New Jersey metropolitan region’s 1,600 miles of coastline. Free events will give guests the opportunity to get to know local marine life, participate in crafts, science experiments, and other water-related activities, and learn about the work of the many organizations that connect New Yorkers to our waterfront, work towards resiliency, and protect and preserve our resources.

Photograph by David Gonsier, Courtesy of The Waterfront Alliance

Along with learning about the water and participating in aquatic-themed activities on-land, City of Water Day will provide multiple ways for guests to get into the water. Returning to the festival this year is the The Con Edison Cardboard Kayak Race, a competition where teams race to create a sea-worthy vessel using nothing but cardboard and tape. This competition takes place at Brooklyn Bridge Beach, a usually off-limits waterfront that will be open only for City of Water Day. Free PortNYC Boat Tours on all kinds of vessels, from tall ships to tugboats including the John J. Harvey (pictured on top), will be offered from homeport docks throughout New York City, and many neighborhood activities will offer opportunities to kayak, paddle-board and row.

Photograph by Ian Douglas, Courtesy of the Waterfront Alliance

Whether you want to meet marine biologists in Brooklyn, clean up a shoreline in Manhattan, kayak in the Bronx, fish in Queens, or discover lighthouses in Staten Island, you can do it all on City of Water Day. Check out the Waterfront Alliance’s website for a list of all the free activities taking place on July 13th and see photographs from past City of Water Day events below!

Photograph by David Gonsier, Courtesy of The Waterfront Alliance

Next, check out 10 Buildings Connected with NYC’s Maritime Past

 City of Water Day, waterfront, waterfront alliance

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