Celebrating Jewish and Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

The month of May brings many reasons to celebrate — spring is in the air and we've finally put away our winter boots. School is winding down, Mother's Day is around the corner, and we're all looking forward to a fun summer. But it's also a time when we celebrate Jewish and Asian Pacific American Heritage month.

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In New York, more than anywhere else in the world, ethnic and cultural diversity brings a vibrant mix of world influences that cannot be duplicated anywhere else. It's this amazing ability to coexist, understand, and respect that makes New York City (NYC) so spectacular. Our city is in essence the United Nations, with all five boroughs illustrating this melting pot of cultures and welcoming local residents and tourists alike.

Did you know that almost 200 languages are spoken in NYC and that 40 percent of the population was born outside of the United States? Our ability to coexist, to recognize and appreciate our differences, and the value they each bring makes NYC a cosmopolitan city like no other.

As an immigrant family with local roots dating back more than 35 years, Broadway Stages understands first hand the importance of diversity, and we promote the inclusion of experiences, talents, and culture across our operations and in the communities where we work and live.

This May, as we celebrate both Jewish American and Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, we encourage you to learn about your neighbors, to recognize the achievements and contributions they have made, and to join in the celebration. To learn more about Jewish American heritage, click here, and find out about Asian Pacific American heritage, click here.

Celebrating Black History Month and Local Hero #42 Jackie Robinson

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Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams Hosts Jackie Robinson Essay Contest
The first two months of the new year have special significance – in January we recognize the 100th birthday of a local hero, Jackie Roosevelt Robinson, and in February we celebrate the 50th anniversary of Black History Month.

On April 15, 1947 Jackie Robinson became the first black athlete to play Major League Baseball (MLB) in the modern era, playing first base for the Brooklyn Dodgers at Ebbets Field in the Flatbush neighborhood of New York. From pioneering integration of professional athletics in America to playing a critical role in the Civil Rights movement, Robinson helped change the landscape of race relations in the United States. But his influence goes beyond the baseball field. Robinson was also the first black television analyst in MLB and the first black vice president of a major American corporation, Chock full o'Nuts. In addition, in the 1960s, he helped establish the Freedom National Bank, an African American-owned financial institution based in Harlem, New York. Robinson passed away in 1972 at the age of 53, but his memory continues to be celebrated.

On January 31, 2019, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, together with Majority Leader Laurie Cumbo, kicked off Black History Month with a tribute to Jackie Robinson. At a celebration at Brooklyn Borough Hall, a proclamation and posthumous "Key to Brooklyn" were presented to the family of Jackie Robinson (accepted by his granddaughter Sonya Pankey) on what would have been the 100th birthday of the hall of famer. In addition, the winners of an essay contest acknowledging the character and achievements of Jackie Robinson were recognized. The essay contest was held at three local schools named after the famous baseball player and civil rights leader. The schools involved in the essay contest were M.S. 352 - Brooklyn, P.S. 375 – Brooklyn, and P.S. 15 - Queens.   

Judges for the essay contest included community leaders, educators, a Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice, an attorney, and Gina Argento, President and CEO of Broadway Stages. As a company with local roots, Broadway Stages is committed to giving back and welcomed the opportunity to join in the celebration and serve as a judge for the essay contest. Gina applauds the efforts of Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams and Majority Leader Laurie Cumbo for kicking off Black History Month with this ceremonial event. "Celebrating culture, and accomplishments, helps build awareness, and reminds us all of the value that our diverse experiences and talents bring to our world," Gina said. Broadway Stages congratulates all the students who participated in the essay contest and recognizes the winners on a job well done.

M.S. 352, Ebbets Field Middle P.S. 375, Jackie Robinson Primary          P.S. 15, Jackie Robinson Primary
1st  – Merlik Alleyne 1st – Kamryn Bennett                      1st – Anaelle Pierre Charles
2nd – Ragiyata Bah   2nd – Victoria Rolon             2nd – Madison St. Claire
3rd – Brianna Pettiford     3rd – N/A             3rd – Jasmine Jackson

For information about the Jackie Robinson Foundation, click here. To view the award ceremony at Brooklyn Borough Hall, click here