August 17–18, 2013, was a busy weekend of practice and celebration as the NYC Tri-State Branch celebrated Awareness Day 2013. Saturday kicked off with the final NYC Summer Streets demo and class. This is the fourth year that the city has shut down to cars a major artery from the Brooklyn Bridge, up Park Avenue, all the way to Central Park on the first three Saturday mornings of August. Each year we have offered Taoist Tai Chi demos and introductory classes from 9 to 10 am to all who walk, ride, jog, skip and otherwise pass by. (We are such an integral part of the programming we were featured in this year’s commercial.) This year was the biggest Summer Streets gathering ever, with more than 25 new students trying Taoist Tai Chi at our Park Avenue and 51st St. on August 18.
From the streets, we made our way back to our 29th St. location to hold our Annual Meeting, and then it was off to lunch. The afternoon was capped off by a local intensive, during which those instructors who had been at CIT Week in Orangeville shared some of the themes of this year’s teachings. Sunday it was time for an Awareness Day picnic in Socrates Sculpture Park, where among an ever-changing exhibit of large sculptures our popular weekly outdoor class faces the Manhattan skyline. (Also a popular feature of the park, we were recently featured in a local ABC News segment about outdoor classes around the city.) More than 40 people came to try Taoist Tai Chi and many of them stayed for the delicious pot-luck picnic. All in all many more people in the populous town are now aware of, and some have even tried, Taoist Tai Chi!