What was it like to live in Yorkville when 86th Street was known as German Broadway, when the smell of hops from the Ruppert and Ehret’s breweries filled the air, and when a stop at Paprika Weiss on 82nd Street preceded daily exercise at Sokol Hall? FRIENDS and the Historic Districts Council will celebrate Yorkville’s past while highlighting places that still offer a glimpse into this area’s rich immigrant history. The symposium will feature talks on Yorkville life and architecture, and cuisine from some of the neighborhood’s storied establishments.
Alexandra Kelly – Manager of Outreach Services and Adult Programming at the New York Public Library, and developer and director of the NYPL’s Community Oral History Project
Edward Kasinec – Born and reared in the post-war Czech, Slovak and Rusyn communities of Yorkville, serves as a Research Scholar at the Harriman Institute, Columbia University and since 2015 as Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University
Thomas Pryor – A native Yorkville resident, storyteller and author of I Hate the Dallas Cowboys – tales of a scrappy New York boyhood
Peter Walsh – Longtime Irish resident of Yorkville, writer, and musician
Irene Mergl – A lifelong Yorkville resident and member of the Sokol Hall, where she serves as 1st Vice President and Historian
Vít Hořejš – Co-founder of the Czechoslovak-American Marionette Theatre, who showcases traditional Czech marionettes, many of which were discovered in Yorkville’s Jan Hus Presbyterian Church
Gregory Dietrich – preservation consultant and proprietor of Gregory Dietrich Preservation Consulting, graduate of Columbia University’s Historic Preservation program, and an Advisor to the Historic Districts Council