NYC LANTERN FESTIVAL DRAWS HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF VISITORS TO SNUG HARBOR CULTURAL CENTER DURING ITS SIX WEEK HOLIDAY RUN
BY JESSICA JONES GORMAN
Seven acres of Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Gardens were illuminated by 40 LED light installations over the course of six weeks this holiday season, as the first ever NYC Winter Lantern Festival made its debut in Staten Island.
The event, co-sponsored by Empire Outlets and Snug Harbor and produced by New York Events & Entertainment and Haitian Culture, was the China National Tourist Office’s signature project for 2018. Hundreds of thousands of visitors flocked to the nightly displays, which also featured live performances of traditional Chinese dances and a diverse lineup of holiday vendors.
“Empire Outlets is proud to support and sponsor events that enhance the vibrant North Shore community and drive interest for new visitors,” noted Joseph Ferrara, developer/partner of Empire Outlets. “With the New York Chinese Scholar’s Garden as the backdrop, this event provided locals and tourists an opportunity to explore Staten Island, and is the beginning of many creative and entertaining festivals to come at Staten Island’s North Shore. We are proud to be a pioneer in these efforts.”
The largest festival of its kind to hit the borough, the event focused on the thousand year Chinese lantern tradition, which symbolizes hope for a prosperous community, a loving family, and a healthy life. Dozens of artists collaborated for months to create each lantern, and highlights of the exhibit included a 150 foot dragon, 25 pandas, and a giant shark mouth that allowed visitors to venture inside and experience an illuminated ocean scene.
“The NYC Winter Lantern Festival was an exciting time for Staten Island and all of New York City,” Ferrara concluded. “We’re so proud to have been a part of this and look forward to many more amazing accomplishments to come in 2019.
Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden
1000 Richmond Terrace / snug harbor.org