September 14, 2012
Bryant Park's legendary green lawn will attract more than picnic blankets later this month, as a flock of sheep get ready to take over the park.
In cooperation with the American Sheep Industry Association (ASI), 30 American sheep will be brought into the city from a New York state farm on Sept. 27 to munch on, and fertilize, Bryant Park's grass as part of an event to promote the interior wool market and the Campaign for Wool.
The animals - part of the promotional campaign started in 2010 by the Prince of Wales - will be penned in a 40-foot-by-40-foot, plexiglass-enclosed area and will be allowed to munch on the park's manicured lawn.
A representative for the Bryant Park Corporation said the grass in the designated sheep area will be allowed to grow extra long in advance of their arrival.
"We're fully appreciative of this event," said Jerome Barth, vice president of business affairs for the corporation. "We got very excited about the visual of having sheep in the park."
The pro-wool campaign - which was launched when the prince noticed an overall decline in the industry, with the price of wool dropping along with the number of sheep worldwide - touts the benefits of the fabric, praising it as durable, easy to clean and breathable.
Organizers said they also want to drain the fountain in the park for the day and fill it with wool and yarn, as well as cover several trees in the park with wool fabric.
A table will be set up to showcase how raw wool is sorted. Crafting and knitting stations will showcase wool-centered activities. A bespoke bed made primarily of wool will be on site, along with the craftsman who made it, to highlight the process of creating a mattress from wool.
Home decorating store ABC Carpet & Home will provide wool rugs that will be used for yoga sessions.
"We are looking forward to Campaign for Wool's first event in the United States and pleased to work with them to promote wool in New York City," said Tom Colyer, vice chairman of ASI's Wool Council. "It is a great opportunity for wool and should prove interesting with live sheep in the park adjacent to the historic New York Public Library."
ASI is a sponsor of Campaign for Wool.
Reprinted in part from DNAinfo.com