Lectures and Other Events

2013 Sacred Sites Open House Weekend

Marble Collegiate Church, Manhattan

Plymouth Church, Brooklyn Heights

Plymouth Church, Brooklyn Heights

Plymouth Church, Brooklyn Heights

Grace Church, Brooklyn Heights


St. Matthias R.C. Church - Ridgewood, Queens Photo by Steve Fisher.

Joe Kubler, Director of Music, St. Matthias R.C. Church - Ridgewood, Queens Photo by Steve Fisher.


First Unitarian Congregational Society, Brooklyn Heights.

First Unitarian Congregational Society, Brooklyn Heights.

First Unitarian Congregational Society, Brooklyn Heights.

First Unitarian Congregational Society, Brooklyn Heights.


St. Mark's in-the-Bowery

Christ & Saint Stephen's Episcopal Church, 122 W 69th St.

Church of the Incarnation, 209 Madison Ave.

Ron Borgna at John Hus, Binghamton

Christ & Saint Stephen's Episcopal Church, 122 W 69th St.

Accompanist, Rev. Ron Thomas for John Hus Choir

May 18-19, 2013

Spanning 22 different counties across New York, from the five boroughs of New York City to Albany and Buffalo, 97 landmark churches, synagogues, meeting houses and one historic burial ground participated in the Conservancy’s 3rd Annual “Sacred Sites Open House Weekend.” Participating sites opened their doors to neighbors, tourists and passers-by. Volunteer staff, as well as preservation experts and clergy did a fabulous job highlighting their site’s remarkable art and architecture. Visitors were welcomed with refreshments and presented with congregational history, detailed accounts of beautiful stained glass windows, awe-inspiring architecture, lessons in preservation, magnificent pipe organ demonstrations and performances, and more. It also gave congregations the opportunity to showcase their cultural and social service programs that enrich all of our communities.

Check out our Facebook page for more photos from participating congregations across the state.

Take our Survey
If you toured Sacred Sites during our Open House Weekend, we’d appreciate your feedback so we can help make next year’s visitor experience even better. Please take our 2min survey.

We are grateful to this year’s Sacred Sites Open House sponsors EverGreene Architectural Arts, Faith & Form, and Walter Sedovic Architects. Evergreene co-hosted two events leading into the weekend, a panel discussion on planning major restoration projects, and a documentary screening. The panel discussion, attended by architects, restoration contractors, and church and synagogue leaders, was moderated by Ann Friedman of New York Landmarks Conservancy, and featured speakers Jeff Greene of EverGreene Architectural Arts, Inc., Walter Sedovic & Jill Gotthelf of Walter Sedovic Architects, and Jerry Keucher of St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in Brooklyn, author of Remember the Future. The screening of “In All Things”, a documentary on the history and award-winning restoration of St. Francis Xavier Church, was held in the magnificently restored sanctuary of St. Francis Xavier Church.

This year, the Conservancy celebrated Sacred Sites Open House by visiting the landmark Museum at Eldridge Street on the Lower East Side of Manhattan for our Tourist in Your Own Town video series.

Tourist in Your Own Town #20 – Museum at Eldridge Street (Restored Synagogue) from New York Landmarks Conservancy on Vimeo.

2013 Open House Weekend in the News:

New York City’s Brooklyn Heights and Upper West Side neighborhoods, Patchogue, Syracuse, Rochester, Albion, and Buffalo coordinated schedules and sent visitors from one site to the next, while Binghamton’s Preservation Association of the Southern Tier signed up 15 participating sites in Binghamton and Johnson City, including several sites not previously known to the Conservancy, representing architecture of many worship traditions, architectural styles and time periods.

The open house was listed in and reported on in The New York Daily News, Time Out New York, Crain’s New York Business, and several regional newspapers and television stations around the state.

Binghamton Pressconnects.com

Brooklyn Daily Eagle

Brooklyn Heights Blog


Buffalo News

Catholic Courier

The New City Patch

The New York Daily News

News 4 (Binghamton, NY)

Poughkeepsie Journal

Queens Chronicle

Queens Gazette

Queens Times Ledger

Staten Island Advance Here and here.

The Syracuse Post Standard

Daily Voice (Tarrytown, NY)

Time Out New York

WBNG (Binghamton, NY)

Open House 2014

The Conservancy has scheduled the fourth annual Sacred Sites Open House for May 17th-18th, 2014. Participating sites were sent an online survey, to help us with planning, if you have any suggestions please email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Sacred Sites is the only statewide program in the country offering grants and technical help to landmark religious institutions regardless of denomination. It has helped more than 700 religious institutions across New York State with over $8 million in assistance. The grants have leveraged overall projects totaling $560 million. Some 200 New York City congregations have received $3.4 million of that grant total.

The annual Sacred Sites Open House weekend has three objectives:

• To encourage sacred sites to open their doors to the general public. Inviting visitors is a great way to build broad community support for the ongoing preservation of historic institutions.

• To inspire residents to be tourists in their own town, introducing non-members to the history, art and architecture embodied in sacred places. New Yorkers tour religious sites around the world but may overlook those in their own back yard. Developing cultural tourism is key to the future of sacred sites.

• To publicize the many programs and services religious institutions offer their neighbors. The important work these sites provide benefits the entire community – not just the congregation’s members- and help ensure the congregation’s future.

Check out our Facebook page for photos from previous Open House weekends.
2012 Photo Album

2011 Photo Album

For Congregations looking to participate next year:

The Conservancy has created a Tool Kit with suggestions for showcasing your historic site and community facilities, ideas for public outreach and sample press releases for local media. See the .pdf documents listed on the right. If you have any questions, contact Ann Friedman or Rahna Jalashgar at 212-995-5260 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).