All five of New York City’s boroughs will be allowed to host outdoor cultural performances on designated city streets this spring under a new Open Culture program, announced by the city’s mayor Bill DeBlasio. Venues and institutions will be able to apply for these Open Culture permits beginning March 1, with a list of locations available here.
Each of these events must follow COVID-19 social-distancing guidelines and provide a site plan, COVID-19 safety plan and run of show. Some COVID-19 guidelines include markers to ensure six feet of distance between attendees, facemask requirements, frequent signage regarding social distancing, hand hygiene stations consisting of soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer and mandatory health screenings for volunteers.
There’s $10 million in federal grants up for grabs. We launched Curtains Up NYC to ensure that money gets to our cultural institutions.
— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) February 8, 2021
“From Open Streets, to Open Restaurants, to Open Culture, New York City has found creative and sustainable ways to connect New Yorkers to their neighborhoods while staying safe from COVID-19,” de Blasio said in a statement obtained by The BrooklynVegan. “I’m honored to support the cultural institutions who make our city great, and I can’t wait to see our creative community in action.”
Currently Booklyn and Queens, two of the most diverse boroughs in the entire city, host the most streets available for these upcoming events. The Open Culture events will likely run past spring as well, with applications closing on October 21. De Blasio also announced a program called Curtains Up NYC, which is set to provide application assistance to live-performance venues, organizations and workers applying for federal relief. Curtains Up NYC is an extension of the larger Save Our Stages Initiative. More than 300 events are scheduled to take place through Labor Day.