The Annual Cookie Walk is held in the picturesque brick and terra cotta St. Nicholas of Myra Orthodox Church. This designated NYC Landmark Building shares its proud heritage with several NYC churches designed by famed architect James Renwick, including St. Patrick's Cathedral, Grace Church and
St. Stephen's Church. For over 100 years, the church complex has been an East Village cornerstone of Gothic and Renaissance-style architecture.
More Church History
The original building was constructed in 1882-83 as the Memorial Chapel of St. Mark’s Church in the Bowery. It was commissioned by Rutherford Stuyvesant (c.1840-1909) for his deceased wife, Mary Pierrepont from the Pierrepont family of Brooklyn. Rutherford Stuyvesant was a descendant of several Colonial figures of New York and New England, including Peter Stuyvesant (through his mother side which required Rutherford to legally change his name). His wife Mary tragically died in 1879 while giving birth. The church was built as a Memorial Chapel to her and to continue her philanthropic works in the tenements of the Lower East Side.
St. Mark’s Church in the Bowery is an Episcopalian church located to the west of the St. Nicholas Church at 10th Street and 2nd Avenue. The Memorial Chapel ceased being a chapel of St. Mark’s Parish around 1909 and was occupied by the Holy Trinity Slovak Lutheran Church until 1911. The present Orthodox Christian congregation rented the church from the Episcopal Diocese of New York in 1925 and in 1937 they bought the building and named the church after a beloved saint, St. Nicholas, Archbishop of Myra.
During his long and varied career, architect James Renwick designed many of New York’s most well-known churches. He worked in many different styles, but is especially known for his Gothic Revival style churches. St. Nicholas of Myra Church displays a simplified Gothic Revival style that is enriched with a highly varied roof line and areas of intricate, terra-cotta trim, executed in a Renaissance Revival style. It is large and complexly massed, with each section clearly defined. The original library and school are located at the corner of 10th Street and Avenue A and are distinguished by a tall, square bell tower topped by a steep pyramidal roof. The dramatic entrance way, includes an intricate stained-glass transom. The street-facing, gable end of the chapel is marked by three tall, gothic-arched stained glass windows united by an applied pointed-arch lintel. The stain-glass still bears the initials of the Stuyvesant heirs.The chapel, the entrance porch and the tower are all crowned by Orthodox-style copper crosses.
The building at 10th Street and Avenue A has been an important part of this densely-populated neighborhood for more than 130 years and through the work of various church organizations has served as a cornerstone for many immigrants in their adaptation to their new country. To learn more St. Nicholas of Myra church and its parishioners, please visit our website at www.stnicholaschurchnyc.org.