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A small group stopped traffic near the Holland Tunnel. Crowds chanted “Whose lives matter? Black lives matter!” at Cadman Plaza Park in Brooklyn. Activists gave emotional speeches outside the Police Headquarters in Manhattan.
Across the city, New Yorkers on Tuesday marked the anniversary of the murder of George Floyd by a police officer in Minneapolis. His killing set off a wave of protests across the nation, including several weeks of rallies attended by thousands in New York.
Here’s a look at how the city remembered Mr. Floyd:
Taking a knee in Harlem
Attendees at a memorial in Harlem, organized by the Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network, knelt for nine minutes and 29 seconds, the length of time the Minneapolis police officer, Derek Chauvin, held his knee on Mr. Floyd’s neck. The room largely fell into silence.
“A conviction of Chauvin is not enough,” Mr. Sharpton said. “We must have legislation that defines and refines what police excessive force is all about.”
A series of protests and demonstrations
Protesters including Shaun Donovan, a Democrat who is running for mayor, had their hands bound with zip ties by the police near the Holland Tunnel. The group blocked the tunnel’s entrance for at least 15 minutes early Tuesday, decrying police misconduct and saying the push for change spurred by Mr. Floyd’s killing needed to continue.
At Barclays Center in Brooklyn, family members of people who were fatally shot by the police turned out. They included Eric Vassell, the father of Saheed Vassell, who was killed in Crown Heights in 2018, and Hawa Bah, the mother of Mohamed Bah, who was shot by officers in Harlem in 2012.
And at Foley Square in Manhattan, several attendees carried signs supporting Asian-American solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, emphasizing the importance of unity after the past year.
Mixed reflections on the past year
The demonstrations took on varied tones throughout the day, a mix of frustration, celebration and sadness. To some, it was hard to feel much had changed over the last 12 months.
“Yes, we got justice for Floyd, but the same day we got justice, a young girl was killed,” said Nnena Jobe, a lifelong Brooklyn resident, referencing the police shooting of Ma’Khia Bryant in Ohio.
“I don’t feel any different,” she said. “And I don’t think I’ll feel any different.”
Ali Watkins, Michael Gold, Mihir Zaveri and Téa Kvetenadze contributed reporting.
From The Times
Want more news? Check out our full coverage.
The Mini Crossword: Here is today’s puzzle.
What we’re reading
Calls for New York to end the sale of smokable tobacco products are growing among some organizations. Legislation has stalled in previous years. [Gothamist]
Children between 2 and 5 will not be required to wear masks at New York’s summer camps and child care programs, the state announced. [Spectrum News]
At least seven people were seriously injured, including a firefighter, after a fire erupted in a Brooklyn apartment building. [NBC 4 New York]
And finally: The city’s newest park draws crowds
Rising from the Hudson River, Little Island preens atop a bouquet of tulip-shaped columns, begging to be posted on Instagram. As my colleague Michael Kimmelman describes it: Outside, it’s eye candy. Inside, a charmer, with killer views.
The $260 million, 2.4-acre project near 13th Street in Hudson River Park, has drawn several hundred visitors at a time since it opened to the public on Friday, garnering positive reviews on social media.
The park is open daily from 6 a.m. to 1 a.m., with free entry reservations required after noon. There is no time limit on how long people remain in the park once they enter.
[Read more about how the park on the Hudson came to be.]
Opponents battled for years in court to stop Little Island. The park-within-the-park was conceived nearly a decade ago to replace Pier 54 on Manhattan’s West Side. A series of legal challenges erupted, but a deal brokered by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo ultimately rescued the project.
This summer, several performances and children’s programs are scheduled to begin at various spaces at the park, which includes an amphitheater overlooking the water with more than 600 seats.
Trish Santini, Little Island’s executive director, said that her staff has been working closely with community organizations to ensure that free or inexpensive tickets get into the hands of underserved groups and neighborhood schoolchildren.
A second stage is custom made for children and educational events. And the main plaza, where you can grab a bite to eat and sit at cafe tables under umbrellas, doubles as a third venue.
It’s Wednesday — get some fresh air.
Metropolitan Diary: Slim rose
On a Saturday morning in the fall of 1963, I and two of my Villanova University freshman friends boarded a train from Philadelphia to New York. We were on our way to the legendary record shop in the subway arcade at the Times Square station.
The shop, Times Square Records, was owned by Irving Rose, who was known as Slim. It had become a mecca for teenage boys and young men in cities along the East Coast who were fans of what is today called doo-wop music.
Animated and loud in our black leather car jackets and pompadours, my friends and I annoyed the other passengers of the train arguing the merits of our favorite singing groups and composing want lists of the records we hoped to buy when we got to New York.
After the train arrived at Grand Central, we made our way to 42nd Street and Broadway, only to find that the store did not open for an hour.
We went to Grant’s cafeteria in Times Square and, seated at the lunch counter, we continued to discuss doo-wop music and our want lists.
A tall, slender man with thick glasses who was sitting to our right regarded us wearily as he read the newspaper and ate a sandwich.
At 10 minutes to the hour, he got up and made a motion indicating to the counterman that he was paying for our lunches.
“Follow me,” he said listlessly.
When we reached the door, the counterman shouted.
“Thanks, Slim,” he said. “See you tomorrow.”
— Craig Long
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