No Need to Leave for Labor Day Weekend. Stay Home and Enjoy SI Arts & Culture

Written on 09/02/2018

The Minority Leader has allocated more than $5 million in discretionary and capital funding in Fiscal Year 2019 for cultural institutions, programs and events in the borough

City Council Minority Leader Steven Matteo today advised Staten Islanders to skip Labor Day weekend traffic jams, crowded beaches and overpriced hotels and to stay home to enjoy some of the great museums, theaters, historic sites, free concerts and other events the borough has to offer. An avid supporter of Staten Island arts and culture, Minority Leader has allocated more than $5 million in discretionary and capital funding for cultural institutions the borough in Fiscal Year 2019.


“You don’t have to make elaborate plans for Labor Day weekend, or stress over traffic jams or overpay to stay in a hotel – you can get away right here on Staten Island. Visit the wonderful animals and exhibits at the Staten Island Zoo, explore the beautiful grounds of Snug Harbor, or take in a show at the St. George Theatre. These and many other great institutions enrich our borough, and that is why I dedicate a substantial portion of my discretionary and capital budgets to support them as well as arts and culture programs,” Minority Leader Matteo said.


The latest allocations Matteo has made in Fiscal Year 2019 include $1.1 million to upgrade the HVAC system at the Staten Island Children’s Museum; $330,000 to the Staten Island Zoo (for a total of $990,000 from the Staten Island City Council delegation) to help create a new Clove Road entrance, improve interactive exhibits, and build a weather education center and a new home for its famed season-prognosticating groundhog, Staten Island Chuck; $125,000 for the restoration of the Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art; $150,000 for dressing room renovations at the St. George Theatre; $150,000 to build a public restroom at the Snug Harbor Cultural Center; and $100,000 for new stairs and an elevator at Casa Belvedere. He has also helped to fund Staten Island’s free Summer Sunset Concert Series, the Staten Island Irish Fair, and the historic Travis Fourth of July Parade and has provided $3 million for after-school cultural programs at more than a dozen schools, through the City Council CASA (Cultural After-School Adventures) initiative.


The following cultural institutions, organizations, programs and events received funding from Minority Leader Matteo in Fiscal Year 2019:


Organization - Purpose of Funds                                                                                                                                      Amount

Borough President  (w/SI Delegation ) - Summer Concerts                                                                                               $20,000

*Casa Belvedere – Stair and Elevator Tower Construction                                                                                              $100,000

Columcille Cultural Center, Inc. -  Irish Fair                                                                                                                        $3,000

Council on the Arts and Humanities for Staten Island  -  Exhibits & Promotions                                                              $3,000

*Jacques Marchais Center of Tibetan Art Inc. - Museum Restoration                                                                            $125,000

National Lighthouse Museum  -           Youth Education                                                                                                    $2,500

*Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Gardens – Public Restroom                                                                        $150,000

Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Gardens - Youth Matters Program                                                                   $4,000

Sports and Arts in Schools Foundation,  Inc.  - Summer & After-School Programs                                                          $5,500

*St. George Theatre Restoration, Inc. -Renovation of Dressing Rooms                                                                        $150,000

*Staten Island Children's Museum – Mechanical Systems Upgrade                                                                           $1,100,000

Staten Island Children's Museum - Cultural Programs                                                                                                       $5,000

Staten Island Historical Society -  Tours for 1st Graders at Historic Richmond Town Tour                                              $5,000

Staten Island Sports Hall of Fame, Inc. - General Operating                                                                                             $8,000

Staten Island Zoological Society, Inc. - Exhibits                                                                                                              $20,000

*Staten Island Zoological Society, Inc. - Clove Road Entrance Pathway                                                                      $330,000

Travis Fourth of July Celebration Committee, Inc. (w/ SI Delegation) - Parade                                                                $5,000

CASA Funding for afterschool cultural programs ($20,000 per school):                                                                     $3,000,000


  • PS 9: Staten Island Makerspace
  • PS 29: Staten Island Children’s Museum
  • PS 60: Staten Island Children’s Museum
  • PS 41: Sundog Theatre
  • PS 50: Sundog Theatre
  • PS 26: Sundog Theatre
  • PS 38: Sundog Theatre
  • PS 48: Staten Island Zoo
  • PS 30: Staten Island Zoo
  • PS 11: Staten Island Zoo
  • PS 39: IlluminART Productions
  • PS 52: NIA Community Services Network
  • PS 23: Staten Island Historical Society
  • PS 54: Staten Island Historical Society
  • PS 46: Staten Island Institute of Arts and Sciences


*denotes a capital allocation