New York’s Oldest Labyrinth is at Riverside

New York’s oldest labyrinth, built in 1928, can be found at Riverside Church on the Upper West Side.

“I have at least six or seven different labyrinths on display in my living room,” said Mace Anderson. “I’m a labyrinth man.”

Anderson has been a member and volunteer at Riverside for more than three decades. His first labyrinth was at a church in the Bronx, and he’s also visited the labyrinth at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, but he calls Riverside and its labyrinth his homebase. According to Anderson, the church was paid for in large part by the Rockefellers, who sent their architects to Chartres Cathedral in France to study the design of its medieval labyrinth from the early 13th century. They installed a smaller version at Riverside’s high altar.

In April 1967, Martin Luther King Jr. stood on that labyrinth while giving a speech about ending the Vietnam War. And in 1996, opera singer Jesse Norman hosted a fundraiser for AIDS attended by Whoopi Goldberg, Maya Angelou, and Toni Morrison. The choreographer Bill T. Jones also performed a dance solo in the center of the labyrinth. “Some people think it’s New Age,” Anderson said. “No, it’s really old age.”

Click here to read the full article by Shayla Love at the Gothamist.