NEW YORK CITY NAMES INTERSECTION OF GREENWICH AVENUE AND CHRISTOPHER STREET IN HONOR OF AUTHOR MAURICE SENDAK IN CELEBRATION OF “WILD THINGS WEEK IN NYC”
—Street Naming Celebrates Author of Famed Children’s Book, Where the Wild Things Are, Which Comes to Life on the Big Screen in Spike Jonze-Directed Film on October 16—
—Sendak’s Work Commemorated with a Special Department of Education Curriculum, Available to Schools Nationwide—
New York, NY (October 14, 2009)—NYC & Company CEO George Fertitta, Chancellor for Teaching and Learning at the Department of Education Santiago Taveras, author and illustrator Maurice Sendak, director Spike Jonze, and 50 school children from PS 41 today honored Sendak at a street naming ceremony in Greenwich Village. Sendak, whose most celebrated book, Where the Wild Things Are, was adapted for film by Jonze and Dave Eggers, wrote the childhood story while living in the neighborhood. Two signs at the corner of Greenwich Avenue and Christopher Street temporarily declare the intersection of “Maurice Sendak Way” and “Wild Things Way.” A proclamation declaring today “Where the Wild Things Are Day” was also unveiled.
“We are privileged to welcome back Maurice Sendak to the very neighborhood in which he wrote the classic children’s tale – a story about discovery which still resonates today with audiences of all ages,” said NYC & Company CEO George Fertitta. “Today’s declaration of ‘Where the Wild Things Are Day’ is a highlight celebration during ‘Wild Things Week in NYC’ and which we are honored to share with the author who started it all 46 years ago.”
“Where the Wild Things Are is one of the most beloved and best-selling children’s books of all time and the New York City Department of Education is thrilled to celebrate the opening of its release as a film,” said Santiago Taveras, Interim Acting Deputy Chancellor for Teaching and Learning at the DOE. “We are especially excited to honor Mr. Sendak’s work by offering a curriculum that encourages teachers to use it to engage students to make connections between the book and the film.”
Also announced at today's event was the creation of a special curriculum resource, created by the New York City Department of Education. Guided by the belief that appreciating the film begins by looking deeply at the book this resource invites elementary and middle school teachers to engage their students in thoughtful comparisons and analyses of the two media. The curriculum is posted on the DOE's website of the Office of Arts and Special Projects, and is available to educators nationwide.
Maurice Sendak was born in Brooklyn in 1928. His most acclaimed literary work, Where the Wild Things Are, which won the coveted Caldecott Medal in 1963, has consistently ranked as one of the 10 all-time, best-selling children’s books by Publishers Weekly since it was first published in 1963. The book continues to
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touch millions of readers worldwide and, with its enduring and captivating appeal, provide an invaluable contribution to the ongoing fight for global child literacy.
Directed by Spike Jonze, “Where the Wild Things Are” has attracted the attention of fans young and old - including the original, loyal supporters of Sendak’s timeless classic, the young readers for which it still appeals, and the youthful generation of enthusiastic, devoted followers of Jonze’s unconventional work. “Where the Wild Things Are,” distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, opens in theaters nationwide on October 16.
In celebration of the highly-anticipated, big-screen adaptation of the book, NYC & Company, has partnered with Warner Bros. Pictures to bring Wild Things Week in NYC to New York City, from October 12 - October 16. Wild Things Week in NYC provides New Yorkers and visitors of all ages the chance to embrace their inner wild child through a week of one-time cultural events, special exhibits, celebrity appearances, promotional giveaways, outdoor adventures, and “wild” festivities throughout New York City, leading up to the films national release on October 16.
A complete list of “Wild Things Week in NYC” events can be found at www.nycgo.com/wildthingsweek.
About NYC & Company: NYC & Company is the official marketing, tourism and partnership organization for the City of New York, dedicated to maximizing travel and tourism opportunities throughout the five boroughs, building economic prosperity and spreading the positive image of New York City worldwide.
About DOE: The New York City Department of Education is the largest system of public schools in the United States, serving about 1.1 million students in over 1,600 schools.
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