Lower East Side History Month

Lower East Side History Month is an annual celebration of the rich and diverse history of the Lower East Side.  Each year in May, Lower East Side cultural and community groups, small businesses and residents create a variety of public events, exhibits, tours, and learning opportunities. All events take place in the historical boundaries of the Lower East Side—which includes the East Village, Chinatown, Two Bridges and Loisaida.

Conceived and launched by Downtown Art and FABnyc in partnership with LES-based cultural and community groups, LES History Month aims to connect our present to our past, exploring how our history can inform and inspire our future.

For more information on events and programs visit www.peoplesles.org.

Ways To Celebrate

Chalk the LES – May 4 & 5

Volunteer to chalk! We’ll get together for breakfast, hand out chalk and provide some historical, location-specific facts and we’ll all chalk the sidewalks! By the end of the day, you can get a history lesson of our neighborhood just by walking the streets.



Attend a Local Event

All participating organizations will be celebrating with LES History related programming and cultural festivities. Join a walking tour, see an exhibit or performance, join a conversation, come east street food and dance! Check the People’s LES calendar of events.


Ways To Participate

For organizations, community groups, companies and small businesses.

Link Your Programming

A walking tour, a story circle, an exhibition… your organization may already have something planned in May or year-round programming that connects easily!



Chalk the LES – May 4 & 5

We’ll provide some historical, location-specific facts & we’ll all hit the streets with colorful chalk. You can join us for breakfast & pick up chalk, write in front of your building and around the block, or even host your own chalking event!



Nominate a Local Hero

If you are a participating organization, you can nominate someone to be honored at our annual LES Community Hero Awards. We recognize community members whose contribution has been deeply meaningful and yet are often the ‘unsung’ heroes of the neighborhood.


Add to the People’s LES

Does your organization have a story, oral history project, piece of writing, lesson plan or photo archive you’d like to share? Let’s add it!





6th & B Garden
Abrons Arts Center
Alpha Omega Theatrical Dance Company
Art Loisaida Foundation
Artists Alliance Inc.
Below the Grid Lab
Bowery Alliance of Neighbors
Bowery Arts + Science
Chen Dance Center
Chinatown Art Brigade
Chinatown Partnership
Clemente Soto Vélez Cultural & Educational Center
City Lore
Cooper Square Committee
Cuchifritos Gallery + Project Space
Dinosaur Hill
Dixon Place
Downtown Art
Earth Celebrations
East Village Community Coalition
East Village Independent Merchants Association
East Village Hats
Essex Street Market Vendor Association
East Village Vintage Collective
First Street Green
Friends of the African Burial Ground
GOH Productions
Good Old Lower East Side
Grand Street Settlement – Grand Coalition of Seniors
Green Map System
Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation
Henry Street Settlement
Katz’s Delicatessen
Kehila Kedosha Janina Synagogue and Museum
La MaMa
La Plaza Cultural
La Sirena Mexican Folk Art
LES Preservation Initiative
LES Ready!
Loisaida Inc.
Lower East Side Girls Club
Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy
M’Finda Kalunga Community Garden
Manny Cantor Center / Educational Alliance
Mark DeGarmo Dance
Merchant’s House Museum
Museum of Chinese in America
Museum of Reclaimed Urban Space
Native Art Department International
Nazareth Housing
Neighborhood Preservation Center
Neighbors to Save Rivington House
New Museum
New York Marble Cemetery
New York Theatre Workshop
Office of NYS Senator Brian Kavanagh
Office of Councilwoman Margaret Chin
Office of Councilwoman Carlina Rivera
Performance Space New York
Random Accessories
Rod Rodgers Dance Company
Sara D Roosevelt Park Community Coalition
Sixth Street Community Center
Swiss Institute
Theater for the New City
The Baroness Latex
The Tenement Museum
The Ukrainian Museum
Third Street Music School Settlement
Tompkins Square Library
University Settlement – The Performance Project
Wild Project
WOW Cafe Theatre