Celebrating Parks for all people: Olmsted 200

Olmsted 200: Parks for All People: Unites 120+ Organizations To Advocate for American Parks and Open Space, Marking Bicentennial of Frederick Law Olmsted’s Birth

Nationwide Events, Concerts, Celebrations, and Advocacy Campaigns Will Unfold Across America in 2022

WASHINGTON (January 20, 2022)—April 26, 2022, marks 200 years since the birth of American landscape architect and social reformer Frederick Law Olmsted, who championed the idea of public parks in the United States. In response, more than 120 organizations nationwide have banded together as “Olmsted 200: Parks for All People” for a year of public programming and events designed to celebrate, strengthen and expand parks, open space and American quality of life.
“‘Parks for all people,’ is the theme for hundreds of events across America this year as we celebrate the joy that parks and open spaces bring to our lives,” said Anne Neal Petri, CEO of National Association for Olmsted Parks, which is managing the Olmsted 200 campaign.

“Frederick Law Olmsted birthed the notion of public urban parks, and he created places that bring people together across their differences. These are bold ideas that transformed American life—and Olmsted 200 is devoted to keeping our parks vibrant and ensuring that every American has fair and ready access to parks.”

Events, concerts, tours, and talks are planned in Olmsted landscapes throughout 2022.

Olmsted famously worked on New York’s Central Park and Prospect Park; the U.S. Capitol Grounds; Boston’s Emerald Necklace; Atlanta’s Druid Hills; and numerous parks and landscapes in Chicago, Milwaukee, Buffalo, N.Y., Louisville, Ky., Connecticut, North Carolina, New Jersey, and beyond. He helped design the campuses of Stanford University; University of California, Berkeley; Trinity College; and many other schools and institutions.

Olmsted’s work laid the philosophical foundation for the later creation of America’s national and state park systems, and thousands of local parks.

“Frederick Law Olmsted proffered the idea that landscape architecture could create places that bolster the project of American democracy,” said Sara Zewde, founder of Studio Zewde and Assistant Professor of Practice at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design.

“As we look at American life today, we see great need and opportunity to build on these original aims of landscape architecture. That’s what Olmsted 200 is all about.”

“Parks are vital contributors to our physical and mental health,” said Georges C. Benjamin, M.D., executive director of the American Public Health Association, an Olmsted 200 founding partner. “This year, let’s commit to park access for every American as part of a bold vision for public health.”

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