Bohemian Benevolent and Literary Association (BBLA)

The mission of the Bohemian Benevolent & Literary Association (BBLA) is to preserve the Czech and Slovak culture in New York City as well as to build a cultural and social dialogue between the Czech and Slovak communities and the American public.

BBLA was established in 1891 to represent Czech and Slovak cultural, educational, and athletic community groups. With contributions from newly arrived immigrants, the Bohemian National Hall (Narodni budova) was built four years later as a gathering place for these organizations in the Yorkville section on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. For over a hundred years the organization has played an important role in preserving the cultural heritage of Slavic immigrants in New York and maintaining contacts with their original lands.

At present, BBLA provides support to six member organizations and fulfills its mission to present Czech and Slovak culture in Manhattan in close collaboration with highly dedicated professionals from the fields of music, literature, visual arts, design, architecture, history, and additional disciplines.


Best kept secret in NYC. Marvellous free concerts, films, book fairs and lending library. Amazingly comfortable movie theater and great restaurant directly next door.

— Dorothy Kellogg / Local Guide