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Artists To Visit Paterson's Historic Hinchliffe Stadium

Jackie Robinson
Jackie Robinson Photo Credit: COURTESY: National Consortium for Creative Placemaking

PATERSON, N.J. -- Visitors will keep their eyes open but no doubt hear echoes during a “mobile workshop” at historic Hinchliffe Stadium in Paterson sponsored this Friday by the National Consortium for Creative Placemaking.

Part of a two-day Northeast summit at Drew University, the workshop visit aims to help artists participate in a current façade restoration project to help revitalize the surrounding neighborhood.

Set above the Great Falls, the 10,000-seat Hinchliffe Stadium – built during the Great Impression -- is one of only three remaining ballparks from the Jim Crow era of segregated professional baseball.

Two Negro League teams, the New York Cubans and the New York Black Yankees, played there during the 1930s and 40s, mostly before Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier on April 15, 1947.

Hinchliffe closed in 1997 and continued falling apart.

Four years ago, it was added to the National Landmark Historic District and is now undergoing the first phase of restoration with a $500,000 grant from the National Park Service.

Friday’s workshop runs from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The session will be co-facilitated by:

  • Jim Constantine, a community planner/urban designer at Looney Ricks Kiss in Philadelphia and creative placemaking chair for the Northern New Jersey Chapter of the Urban Land Institute;
  • Juan Ayala, an architect/urban designer and assistant professor of practice at the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers University who was raised near Hinchcliffe.

The consortium’s Creative Placemaking Leadership Summit also feature a walking tour of Oval Park in East Orange, once home of baseball teams from the Negro League in the 1940's.

Another walking workshop session will be held on Thursday at the Art Factory Studios in Paterson, an arts incubator housed in a historic factory complex of 22 buildings dating from 1840.

The purpose is a conversation about transforming the unique space into an artists' and makers' marketplace.


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