Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Smackdown Between Southpoint Park And Firefighters Field For Roosevelt Island Outdoor Movie Venue - Will Mediocrity Win Again on Roosevelt Island

Where would you rather watch an outdoor movie on Roosevelt Island? At Southpoint Park shown below, with its magnificent waterfront and skyline views that rivals any other New York City location and where outdoor movies have been shown for the last few years.

Click on link here to fully view beautiful panoramic nighttime view of Midtown Manhattan as seen from Southpoint Park on Roosevelt Island.

Or, at Firefighters Field with a view of the Queensboro Bridge underbelly and Roosevelt Island Steam Plant where RIOC, in its wisdom, decided to move it this year.

Image of Firefighters Field Outdoor Movie Venue from amreekandesi

There is a poll on right side column that asks the question "Where should the Roosevelt Island outdoor movie series be held". Please express your opinion if you wish.

RIOC President Steve Shane inquired yesterday if my opinion had changed regarding moving the Roosevelt Island outdoor movie from Southpoint Park to Firefighters Field in light of what Mr. Shane perceived to be a successful event. He writes in response to my question concerning transportation lessons learned from recent tram shutdown:
We are assembling the final data and will sit down to discuss to glean
whatever intel is possible as to next Spring's longer shutdown. Will

PS. I understand the movie was a zooming success as measured by the
turnout. No noise problem. Your view, now in retrospect?
I replied:
I was at the movie and the attendance was not any greater than at previous Southpoint showings so I don't think it can be labeled a "zooming success" if by that you mean that Firefighters Field is a better location than Southpoint Park for an outdoor movie.

There appeared to be more small children at the event but there were very few, if any, elderly or disable people, ostensibly the reason for making the move to Firefighters field since it is supposedly easier to access for these people. As to the noise issue, I never claimed nor has anyone else that I am aware of, that noise was an issue in the location of the outdoor movie.

The main point of my objection to the move to Firefighters Field is that the reason for an outdoor movie experience is not watching any particular movie in itself, but the setting for it, such as Brooklyn Bridge Park, Hudson River Park, Socrates Sculpture Park, which adds tremendously to the whole eventing. Firefighters Field in now way compares to the spectacular setting at Southpoint. I am very happy if some people who attended the event were satisfied, it just could have been so MUCH BETTER. Just like much of Roosevelt Island.

Since the reason for moving the outdoor movie was to make it easier for elderly and handicapped people to attend did not seem to impact the event, I hope you re-consider and return the outdoor movie to Soutpoint Park where it belongs.
Followed by Mr. Shane's response:
There were over 300 people at the Sat night movie. 200 was previous expectancy at Southpoint.
Your personal preferences are clear, but not universally shared.
There were several hospital residents in attendance. Who was it that raised the issue of noise from the bridge, red bus, Keyspan?
Back to me:
Just to clarify RIOC's position on matter, what is the reason for moving outdoor movies from Southpoint to Firefighters Field?
Is it:
Access for elderly and handicapped.
Views for movie venue not important part of event experience.
Views for movie venue somewhat important but no real difference between Firefighters Field and Southpoint Park
Some other reason.

As to the noise issue, Eric from 360 raised it in one of his posts.

Regrettably, I acknowledge that my personal preferences may not be universally shared.
And finally, Mr. Shane:
Because we thought it would be better and to give the constant complainers grist for their mill.
As is apparent, my personal opinion and "grist for the mill" is that an outdoor movie event is more than just watching any particular movie. Anyone can do that in an air conditioned theater or at home. The pleasure in an outdoor movie is to be under the stars experiencing the sights of your surroundings. Otherwise, what is the point? According to About.com other NYC outdoor movie venues:
offers visitors and New Yorkers a chance to watch a movie, as well as enjoy some of New York City's best outdoor scenery -- from skylines to parks.
If outdoor scenery is an important factor in enjoying an outdoor movie, there is no better place on Roosevelt Island than Southpoint Park with its marvelous waterfront and skyline views to do so. Firefighters Field may be an OK or satisfactory site for the movie but why settle for OK when you can have GREAT! All too often Roosevelt Island has had to settle for something less or mediocre at best. Hopefully not this time and the outdoor movie will be returned to Southpoint Park.

Here's some other summer outdoor movie events in New York City from Metromix. Notice how the Roosevelt Island series in not included in this list. Wonder why?


Anonymous said...

Firefighter's Field works just fine for me. After the movie wife and I stroll down to Soutpoint Park before heading back home north.

I love Shane's last comment. I think he can be cool at times.

Anonymous said...

One more thing. Your last paragraph is a little unfair. Has the RI movie night ever been part of any list of outdoor movie presentation in NYC? Especially when it was still in Soutpoint Park?

I am very sure if you and some more people make some noise Roosevelt Island will be listed no matter if it is on Firefighter's Field or in Southpoint Park.

RI 360 said...

I definitely raised the noise issue in at least one of my posts. I would have thought the buses would have certainly detracted from the sound.

As to the location I agree with Rick that the backdrop of the East River is more preferable than the power plant. I woud have angled the screen to be at home plate so at least the view is directly of the bridge and the park across the river.

Sadly I did not attend so I can give no personal observation. I had my company's picnic that afternoon and passed out when we got home that evening.

I am happily surprised at the attendance but the kid's movie was expected to be a big draw I suppose. "Several" patients is not many in my mind.

I am amused as I am sure I am part of the "complainers"

- Eric


1:43 - If you stroll down to Southpoint Park after the movie at Firefighters field anyway, why would you not prefer the movie to begin at Southpoint Park?

Anonymous said...

I agree, Firefighter's field worked very well for my family and I. I think it's cool that the movies are at a different location. It seem to work well for the seniors and disabled persons who came out on Saturday night. The few guys that came in wheelchairs could not have done the same if the location were at Southpoint Park. I also enjoyed the view of the Queensborough Bridge illuminated at night. I can't wait until the next screening.

Anonymous said...

Roosevelt Islander: because it is not about me. Firefighter's Field provides better access to all of RI to watch an outdoor movie. Southpoint Park is a schlepp for many who would probably not have come if it was indeed shown down south.

The viewing was a success last weekend. Why not leave it at that?

Anonymous said...

"for many who would probably not have come"

I mean who the fuck cares about those people? Let them stay home.

Anonymous said...

My only concern was that the street lights were out for quite sometime, thus creating a security issue with possible cars getting broken into and muggins; I guess this can be fixed with more Public Safety Officers wtching the streets and NOT the movie.

Anonymous said...

Beside the venue issue, which I prefer Southpoint, I would like to see better movies shown. I understand wanting movies that will attract families, but what about a children's night and an adult night?

Vicki Feinmel

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