Navy Yard Garden Association Receives Opportunity Grant

The Navy Yard Garden Association, Inc. is pleased to announce it has been awarded an Opportunity Grant in the amount of $2000 from The Mayor’s 2020 Office of Arts and Culture and the City of Boston. The Opportunity Fund supports a broad spectrum of opportunities for engaging in the arts and has as a goal that every neighborhood in Boston has access to the arts.

On May 7, 2020 the Navy Yard Garden Association, Inc. will host a Grand Opening of the "WOW: Wind on Water" sculpture exhibit created by nationally known artist Lyman Whitaker. The exhibit is free to the public and will be installed in various locations throughout the Navy Yard, including along the Boston Harbor Walk.

Thirty-one kinetic sculptures composed of diverse designs of gracefully moving metal pieces will be continually propelled by the harbor’s windy micro-climate, spinning and twirling in imaginative syncopation. The collection of sculptures will be grouped in eight sites throughout the Navy Yard.

This program is supported in part by a grant from the Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture and the City of Boston

Charlestown Patriot-Bridge
Spinning Wheel: Navy Yard Sculpture Presentation
Promises to Be Mesmerizing

An upcoming wind-based kinetic art sculpture installation has the entire Navy Yard buzzing this summer in anticipation of the spring 2020 exhibit that will coincide with the Mayflower 2020 festivities.

The Navy Yard Garden Association has received approval from the Boston Arts Commission and the Boston Planning and Development Agency to place the kinetic art in Shipyard Park and along the Harbor next spring – a follow up to last summer’s popular ‘Big Dog’ sculpture installation in the Yard.

An installation of Lyman Whitaker’s kinetic art in the Dallas Arboretum. An installation will come to the Navy Yard in the spring of 2020.


Click here to read article in the Charlestown Patriot-Bridge.

The USS Constitution Museum Creates New Waterfront Patio

The USS Constitution Museum has opened a new waterfront patio. It is an attractive and relaxing public space located at Dry Dock #2 on Baxter Road, adjacent to the backside of the popular Navy Yard museum. The public is invited to enjoy the patio’s bright blue umbrellas and comfortable tables and chairs.  Accenting the patio are attractive flower boxes filled with cheerful seasonal plantings. This summer the Navy Yard Garden Association collaborated with museum staff on this new addition to the Navy Yard landscape.

A Busy Spring

Saturday, May 18th was an absolutely perfect Spring day here in the Navy Yard! NYGA volunteers rolled up our sleeves, grabbed trowels and worked alongside members of the Flagship Wharf Garden Committee to plant 300 pots of New Guinea Impatiens in the circle garden at the end of 8th Street and the adjacent Sea Walk garden. Annuals were also added to the rectangle garden near the ferry area by Pier 4.

This season NYGA volunteers look forward to assisting Mike Manning, president of Friends of the Boston Harbor Walk, to refresh plantings around the Korean War Memorial in Shipyard Park. We also will partner with the U.S. Constitution Museum to help with a selection of plantings for its new outdoor seating area on Pier 3.  


You may have noticed that the popular red Adirondack chairs have returned to the western slope of lawn below the amphitheater observation deck.  We’ve added six more chairs and invite you to come by and sit a while in one of the most relaxing areas of the Navy Yard.

Charlestown Patriot-Bridge
Sing and Stroll

Cheryl Roddy and Karen Benson keep up with the group for singing "It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year" during the first annual Navy Yard Garden Association Sing and Stroll on Tuesday, Dec. 11. The event benefitted the Ronald McDonald House in the Navy Yard.

Click here to read article in the Charlestown Patriot-Bridge.

Navy Yard Garden Association
Board of Directors 
Letter to BPDA

December 24, 2018

Jason Ruggiero
BPDA Community Engagement Manager

Thank you for the opportunity to comment on six proposals presented December 12, 2018 at a BPDA public meeting in response to the released July 16, 2018 RFP "...The BPDA now requests proposals from interested, able, and ready proponents to activate the waterfront and watersheet of the Charlestown Navy Yard, specificatly Dry Dock #2, the foot of Dry Dock #2, Pier 3, and the Harborwalk."(p. 8). 

We support the proposal elements within RFP scope and designed to attract a diverse population from Boston neighborhoods currently Iacking a meaningful connection to the waterfront; those designed to educate the public about marine science and the history of the Charlestown Navy Yard; and those elements addressing climate resilience. The RFP statement (p. 4) provides guidance " the area continue to respect the past while transitioning to the present, creating opportunities for short- to midterm improvements, including public amenities, programming, neighborhood enhancements and more". We support the need for change through public-private partnerships as we envision a more vibrant neighborhood. Elements from several proposals listed below serve this goal and meet your criteria:  Continue reading..

Charlestown Patriot-Bridge
Say Bye-bye to Pier 5:
BPDA Says it Cannot be Saved, Could Fall in Soon

November 12, 2018 — Any hopes of importing a South Boston ‘Lawn On D’ style park on Pier 5 in the Navy Yard have been dashed this week after Boston Planning and Development Agency (BPDA) officials told neighbors that the pier is not salvageable and, also, very expensive to demolish. The BPDA and the community now sit at quite a conundrum as Pier 5’s underwater supports are extremely deteriorated, it cannot be used for any purposes (not even walking), and it is likely too expensive to demolish. “The bad news tonight is we have done extensive investigations since last year with marine divers on Pier 5,” said BPDA’s Devin Quirk. “They looked at the pilings and the steel and the pier was condemned. The situation was worse than we thought. There’s nothing we can do to salvage it.” BPDA Director Brian Golden said that the cost to demolish the pier would be $5 million, and a plan to make it a passive walking park would cost $16 million. The BPDA’s Rich McGuinness said 10 years ago, a study to get the pier ready for development revealed it would cost $19 million. He said that cost is likely now well into the $25 million range. Golden said the Pier is in danger of falling in if something isn’t done – and that could come in one month or in five years. One of the major issues is that the piers were built during war-time, meaning that the steel used in them was rationed. Instead of being solid with clear welds, they are more hollow, causing serious deterioration.

Click here to read article from Charlestown Patriot-Bridge by Seth Daniel on Page 15.

Charlestown Patriot-Bridge
Her Own Doggie Book

September 2, 2018 — Anne and Mae (2) Killelea check out their copy of the “Rescue and Jessica” book after the exciting program and reading in the Navy Yard on Tuesday night, Aug. 21. The authors and illustrator of the book appeared in Shipyard Park to read and answer questions about how they survived and recovered from their injuries sustained during the 2013 Marathon Bombing – with credit going to Charlestown’s Spaulding Rehab and to the hero of their story, Rescue the Dog. The event was sponsored by the Friends of the Charlestown Navy Yard and the Navy Yard Garden Association.

Charlestown Patriot-Bridge article

The Big Dog Show Exhibit Features NEADS Service Dog "Rescue"

This summer, visitors to Shipyard Park, Boston National Historical Park, and the Harbor Walk will be greeted by 20 8 foot high Cor-Ten steel American Dog sculptures as part of a new art installation, “The Big Dog Show.” Created by award winning sculptor Dale Rogers, the exhibit is on display from June 21 to September 10 and is hosted by the Navy Yard Garden Association in partnership with the Boston Planning and Development Agency, Boston National Historical Park, and National Park Service.

Several of the sculptures are “dressed” to represent different sponsors and organizations, including one featuring a NEADS Service Dog. “We’re pleased that the Navy Yard Garden Association is showcasing Service Dogs and the important work they do every day,” says NEADS Director of Development, Cathy Zemaitis, “and we’re delighted that the association has chosen to name one of the sculptures in honor of Boston’s most famous Service Dog, Rescue, who was raised and trained by NEADS.” Rescue is featured in the new children’s book, Rescue and Jessica, authored by Jessica Kensky and Patrick Downes.

Big Dog Show Opens in Charlestown Navy Yard

(L) Christian Guerra, Art Collection and Program Manager, Mayor's Office of Arts and Culture; (R) Robin DiGiammarino, President. Navy Yard Garden Association, Inc.

More than 300 people and countless dogs of all sizes attended the Grand Opening of The Big Dog Show public art exhibit in the Navy Yard held on the beautiful evening of the summer solstice, June 21st. Distinguished guests included the artist Dale Rogers; Mark Donahue, Deputy Director of Asset Management for the Boston Planning and Development Agency; and Julie Burros, Chief of Arts and Culture for the city of Boston.

Highlights of the celebration included delicious offerings from several food trucks, music by Nevena Djordjevic, and a joyful ribbon-cutting ceremony in Shipyard Park. The Navy Yard Garden Association, Inc., organizer of the exhibit, raised $18,100 in dog “adoptions” and received $25,000 of in-kind donations.

The installation of twenty huge dog sculptures, created from steel by Mr. Rogers and decorated whimsically by corporate sponsors of the event, will be on display through September 10, 2018. It is a family-friendly exhibit, free and open to all members of the public.

The Navy Yard Garden Association, Inc. is a nonprofit entity whose mission is to help the Boston Planning and Development Agency revitalize and enhance its public open spaces within the Charlestown Navy Yard including Shipyard Park through planning, design, programming, and implementation for the benefit of residents and visitors alike. A future goal for the Navy Yard Garden Association, Inc. is the installation of decorative lighting in Shipyard Park.

The Association welcomes volunteers who wish to participate in programming, fundraising, publicity – and dog watching this summer to help us keep an eye on the twenty dogs and make sure they’re happy from now to September 10.  For more details, please visit the Contact page.

Boston city officials, exhibit sponsors, and Navy Yard Garden Association board members enjoy a ribbon-cutting ceremony for The Big Dog Show

Charlestown Patriot-Bridge
Giant Dog Exhibit to Showcase Summer in the Navy Yard

April 28, 2018 — Big dogs are going to find a home in the Navy Yard this summer.  The one-year-old Navy Yard Garden Association announced this week that they have been given the go-ahead to host a public art show this summer that will feature 20 giant metal dogs placed at various locations throughout the Yard. Robin DiGiammarino, of the Association, said the Boston Planning and Development Agency (BPDA) and the artist, Dale Rogers, have partnered with them to bring ‘The Big Dog Show.’

“The exhibit will start (on June 21 and) will run through September 10. We started up in 2017 as a group of volunteers who wanted to pick up and get ready for the Tall Ships coming in. That was a first effort and it was successful. That required working with the BPDA and this year (they) engaged us to do something on Shipyard Park. We wanted to build on work that had been done when public art had been explored as an option in the Navy Yard by others before us.” 

And so that’s what they did.

They contacted Dale Rogers, who is of Massachusetts, and were able to secure a summer-long installation of his public art installation of large dogs. The 20 dogs are each eight feet tall and 10 feet long and weigh 500 pounds. They will be placed in Shipyard Park and also along the HarborWalk.

“They are fun and they are whimsical,” said DiGiammarino. “There will be 20 of them so we have an opportunity for this to highlight the HarborWalk corridor all the way down to Spaulding…We’re encouraging people to go on the HarborWalk and what better way than have a destination in mind that’s cool.”  The Big Dog Show was recently approved by the Boston Arts Commission, and the BPDA is pitching in to create and pour all of the concrete bases for the dog installations.

DiGiammarino said the installation is one of three main goals of the Association. They also hope to bring in free Wi-Fi to the Navy Yard parks, and to add outdoor LED lighting in the parks. “It’s a sleepy place and needs to be revitalized,” she said. “It was designed and constructed about 40 years ago. It’s really time for a facelift.


The Navy Yard Garden Association partnered with the BPDA (Boston Planning & Development Agency) to bring cheerful and comfy Adirondack chairs to Shipyard Park.  They will be freely available all summer. We especially hope residents will use them on the “Overlook Lawn” where we are lucky to have some of the best views of the Boston skyline and Bunker Hill Monument.

Within one day of their arrival, the chairs were in active use, prompting one resident to say, "This is the best thing I have seen in the park in the 20 years since I have lived here.” Local workers and ferry riders were thrilled to discover a new lunchtime and evening option for enjoying downtime in Shipyard Park.  Dog walkers now have a chance to sit a spell and commune with their pups and fellow pet lovers. Sometimes it’s just the simple things that make all the difference in a city. Enjoy!


Navy Yard Garden Association, Inc.

P.O. Box 290525
Charlestown MA 02129

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Copyright 2018. All rights reserved.

A 501(c)3 Not-for-Profit Organization