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Fresh Air Fund History

Aug 21, 2014 02:45PM, Published by Erica Shames, Categories:



In 1877, The Fresh Air Fund, an independent not-for-profit organization, was created with one mission – to allow children living in low-income communities to get away from hot, noisy city streets and enjoy free summer experiences in the country.

When The Fresh Air Fund began, New York City was overflowing with children living in crowded tenements. Many of these youngsters were hit by a tuberculosis epidemic, and “fresh air” was considered a cure for respiratory ailments. More than 130 years ago, the Reverend Willard Parsons, a minister of a small, rural parish in Sherman, Pennsylvania, asked members of his congregation to provide country vacations as volunteer host families for New York City's neediest children. This was the beginning of The Fresh Air Fund. By 1881, the work of The Fresh Air Fund was expanding so rapidly that Reverend Parsons asked for and secured support from The New York Tribune. By 1888, The Fresh Air Fund was incorporated as “The Tribune Fresh Air Fund Aid Society.” Today, The Fresh Air Fund continues to benefit from the support of the media with invaluable assistance from The New York Times.

The Fresh Air Fund's tradition of caring provides children with a much-needed respite from the inner-city streets. Thousands of youngsters enjoy summer experiences with volunteer hosts or attend one of five Fresh Air Fund camps in upstate New York.

The simplicity of our program is its strength. Looking back to 1877, we can reflect on how much has changed, and how much has stayed the same. The Fund began with a small group of youngsters heading for the country and went on to benefit more than 1.7 million needy children.

To sponsor a child, volunteer or get more information, visit FreshAir.org


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    10:00AM

    Travel back in time with this prehistoric outdoor adventure! Open April 22 through October 29, 20...


  • James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution

    09/06/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution—a brand new exhibit—will challenge what visitors think they...


  • Honoring Work: The Labor Day Show

    09/06/2017
    10:00AM — 06:00PM

    What does “honest work” mean to you? Make art on that theme and bring it in! Artwork welcomed b...


  • Robert E. Locher: A Modern Classic

    09/06/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    Robert E. Locher: A Modern Classic July 15 – September 8, 2017 This exhibition features work by...


  • The National Poster Retrospecticus

    09/06/2017
    11:00AM — 05:00PM

    The National Poster Retrospecticus (The NPR) is an internationally traveling poster show featurin...


  • Parakeet Landing

    09/07/2017
    10:00AM

    Surround yourself with hundreds of colorful parakeets in Reptiland’s NEW aviary! Beautiful budgie...


  • Dinosaurs Come to Life

    09/07/2017
    10:00AM

    Travel back in time with this prehistoric outdoor adventure! Open April 22 through October 29, 20...


  • James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution

    09/07/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution—a brand new exhibit—will challenge what visitors think they...


  • Honoring Work: The Labor Day Show

    09/07/2017
    10:00AM — 06:00PM

    What does “honest work” mean to you? Make art on that theme and bring it in! Artwork welcomed b...


  • Robert E. Locher: A Modern Classic

    09/07/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    Robert E. Locher: A Modern Classic July 15 – September 8, 2017 This exhibition features work by...


  • The National Poster Retrospecticus

    09/07/2017
    11:00AM — 05:00PM

    The National Poster Retrospecticus (The NPR) is an internationally traveling poster show featurin...


  • Cirque Italia

    09/07/2017
    07:30PM — 09:30PM

    2017 Press Release – Unit II (GOLD) GET READY PENNSDALE, PA, BECAUSE YOU ARE ABOUT TO HAVE THE T...


  • Parakeet Landing

    09/08/2017
    10:00AM

    Surround yourself with hundreds of colorful parakeets in Reptiland’s NEW aviary! Beautiful budgie...


  • Dinosaurs Come to Life

    09/08/2017
    10:00AM

    Travel back in time with this prehistoric outdoor adventure! Open April 22 through October 29, 20...


  • James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution

    09/08/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution—a brand new exhibit—will challenge what visitors think they...


  • Honoring Work: The Labor Day Show

    09/08/2017
    10:00AM — 06:00PM

    What does “honest work” mean to you? Make art on that theme and bring it in! Artwork welcomed b...


  • Robert E. Locher: A Modern Classic

    09/08/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    Robert E. Locher: A Modern Classic July 15 – September 8, 2017 This exhibition features work by...


  • The National Poster Retrospecticus

    09/08/2017
    11:00AM — 05:00PM

    The National Poster Retrospecticus (The NPR) is an internationally traveling poster show featurin...


  • Parakeet Landing

    09/09/2017
    10:00AM

    Surround yourself with hundreds of colorful parakeets in Reptiland’s NEW aviary! Beautiful budgie...


  • Dinosaurs Come to Life

    09/09/2017
    10:00AM

    Travel back in time with this prehistoric outdoor adventure! Open April 22 through October 29, 20...


  • James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution

    09/09/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution—a brand new exhibit—will challenge what visitors think they...


  • Parakeet Landing

    09/10/2017
    10:00AM

    Surround yourself with hundreds of colorful parakeets in Reptiland’s NEW aviary! Beautiful budgie...


  • Dinosaurs Come to Life

    09/10/2017
    10:00AM

    Travel back in time with this prehistoric outdoor adventure! Open April 22 through October 29, 20...


  • James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution

    09/10/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution—a brand new exhibit—will challenge what visitors think they...


  • The National Poster Retrospecticus

    09/10/2017
    11:00AM — 05:00PM

    The National Poster Retrospecticus (The NPR) is an internationally traveling poster show featurin...


  • Marietta Garden Tour

    09/10/2017
    11:00AM — 04:00PM

    Eight beautiful gardens within the Borough of Marietta with seminars and plant swap! Rain or shi...


  • EXPLORING THE ARMOR

    09/10/2017
    02:00PM — 04:30PM

    September 10 – “EXPLORING THE ARMOR” - Take a private history tour of the outside tracked vehicl...


  • Parakeet Landing

    09/11/2017
    10:00AM

    Surround yourself with hundreds of colorful parakeets in Reptiland’s NEW aviary! Beautiful budgie...


  • Dinosaurs Come to Life

    09/11/2017
    10:00AM

    Travel back in time with this prehistoric outdoor adventure! Open April 22 through October 29, 20...


  • James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution

    09/11/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution—a brand new exhibit—will challenge what visitors think they...


  • Honoring Work: The Labor Day Show

    09/11/2017
    10:00AM — 06:00PM

    What does “honest work” mean to you? Make art on that theme and bring it in! Artwork welcomed b...


  • Parakeet Landing

    09/12/2017
    10:00AM

    Surround yourself with hundreds of colorful parakeets in Reptiland’s NEW aviary! Beautiful budgie...


  • Dinosaurs Come to Life

    09/12/2017
    10:00AM

    Travel back in time with this prehistoric outdoor adventure! Open April 22 through October 29, 20...


  • James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution

    09/12/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution—a brand new exhibit—will challenge what visitors think they...


  • Honoring Work: The Labor Day Show

    09/12/2017
    10:00AM — 06:00PM

    What does “honest work” mean to you? Make art on that theme and bring it in! Artwork welcomed b...


  • The National Poster Retrospecticus

    09/12/2017
    11:00AM — 05:00PM

    The National Poster Retrospecticus (The NPR) is an internationally traveling poster show featurin...


  • Parakeet Landing

    09/13/2017
    10:00AM

    Surround yourself with hundreds of colorful parakeets in Reptiland’s NEW aviary! Beautiful budgie...


  • Dinosaurs Come to Life

    09/13/2017
    10:00AM

    Travel back in time with this prehistoric outdoor adventure! Open April 22 through October 29, 20...


  • James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution

    09/13/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution—a brand new exhibit—will challenge what visitors think they...


  • Honoring Work: The Labor Day Show

    09/13/2017
    10:00AM — 06:00PM

    What does “honest work” mean to you? Make art on that theme and bring it in! Artwork welcomed b...


  • The National Poster Retrospecticus

    09/13/2017
    11:00AM — 05:00PM

    The National Poster Retrospecticus (The NPR) is an internationally traveling poster show featurin...


  • Parakeet Landing

    09/14/2017
    10:00AM

    Surround yourself with hundreds of colorful parakeets in Reptiland’s NEW aviary! Beautiful budgie...


  • Dinosaurs Come to Life

    09/14/2017
    10:00AM

    Travel back in time with this prehistoric outdoor adventure! Open April 22 through October 29, 20...


  • James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution

    09/14/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution—a brand new exhibit—will challenge what visitors think they...


  • Honoring Work: The Labor Day Show

    09/14/2017
    10:00AM — 06:00PM

    What does “honest work” mean to you? Make art on that theme and bring it in! Artwork welcomed b...


  • The National Poster Retrospecticus

    09/14/2017
    11:00AM — 05:00PM

    The National Poster Retrospecticus (The NPR) is an internationally traveling poster show featurin...


  • STEP Housing Options Endowment Auction

    09/14/2017
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Buy your tickets and save the date! This year, STEP is working to establish a Housing Options End...


  • Parakeet Landing

    09/15/2017
    10:00AM

    Surround yourself with hundreds of colorful parakeets in Reptiland’s NEW aviary! Beautiful budgie...


  • Dinosaurs Come to Life

    09/15/2017
    10:00AM

    Travel back in time with this prehistoric outdoor adventure! Open April 22 through October 29, 20...


  • James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution

    09/15/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution—a brand new exhibit—will challenge what visitors think they...


  • Honoring Work: The Labor Day Show

    09/15/2017
    10:00AM — 06:00PM

    What does “honest work” mean to you? Make art on that theme and bring it in! Artwork welcomed b...


  • The National Poster Retrospecticus

    09/15/2017
    11:00AM — 05:00PM

    The National Poster Retrospecticus (The NPR) is an internationally traveling poster show featurin...


  • Parakeet Landing

    09/16/2017
    10:00AM

    Surround yourself with hundreds of colorful parakeets in Reptiland’s NEW aviary! Beautiful budgie...


  • Dinosaurs Come to Life

    09/16/2017
    10:00AM

    Travel back in time with this prehistoric outdoor adventure! Open April 22 through October 29, 20...


  • James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution

    09/16/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution—a brand new exhibit—will challenge what visitors think they...


  • Parakeet Landing

    09/17/2017
    10:00AM

    Surround yourself with hundreds of colorful parakeets in Reptiland’s NEW aviary! Beautiful budgie...


  • Dinosaurs Come to Life

    09/17/2017
    10:00AM

    Travel back in time with this prehistoric outdoor adventure! Open April 22 through October 29, 20...


  • James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution

    09/17/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    James Bond Wore the Quartz Revolution—a brand new exhibit—will challenge what visitors think they...


  • The National Poster Retrospecticus

    09/17/2017
    11:00AM — 05:00PM

    The National Poster Retrospecticus (The NPR) is an internationally traveling poster show featurin...



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