Park It On The Green: Queens Greenspots & Playgrounds

PARKS:

Alley Pond Park
Extending from Little Neck Bay to Springfield Boulevard and Union Turnpike, this 657-acre park is the second largest in Queens. It consists of an environmental center, baseball and football fields, hiking trails, a dog run and first come, first serve adventure course. The origin of “The Alley” name is still debated, but it is rumored that travelers – such as George Washington – passed through the park on their way to Long Island.

Astoria Park
The park is located at 19 St. between Astoria Park S. and Ditmars Blvd. Although widely known for its beautiful pool, the oldest and largest in the city, Astoria Park offers more than aquatic pleasures. Outdoor tennis courts, a track, a bandstand, multiple trails, basketball courts and playgrounds lure visitors from the five boroughs and beyond. Sitting on the edge of the East River and resting between the Triborough Bridge and Hell Gate Bridge, the park offers shoreline sights and sounds that make the benches along its perimeter popular spots year-round.

Bowne Park
This Flushing park is bounded by 29th and 32nd Avenues, and by 155th and 159th Streets. Featuring basketball, bocce courts and playgrounds, it is named in honor of Walter Bowne (1770-1846), who served as a state senator and as New York City’s mayor. Mr. Bowne’s summer residence stood on this property until March 1925, when fire destroyed the building.
Cunningham Park

The park is located at: LIE, 73 Ave., Union Turnpike, GCP between 193 St., Francis Lewis Blvd., Hollis Hills Ter., and 210 St. It’s full of culture, sports, nature and fun! All of these things abound in Cunningham Park, one of the largest parks in Queens. Assembled between 1928 and 1944 and named Cunningham Park in 1934, the space features bicycling, cricket, dog runs and hiking. It is also home to one of the NYPD’s mounted units.

Endangered Andean bear at the Queens Zoo. Photo by Bruce Adler

Flushing Meadows-Corona Park
The main entrance to this park is located off the Grand Central Pkwy., Whitestone Exwy. between 111 St. and College Point Blvd., Park Drive E. At 1,255 acres, Flushing Meadows-Corona Park is larger than Central Park and host to the USTA U.S. Open and the New York Mets in Citi Field. The park also houses the Queens Museum of Art, Queens Zoo, Hall of Science and Queens Theatre.

The site of two 20th century World’s Fairs attended by millions of people, Flushing Meadows Corona Park continues to draw and delight visitors. As the largest park in Queens, it offers plenty of space for whatever your recreational desires may be—baseball, soccer, tennis, cricket, and more. Discover the stunning recreation complex, zoo, art museum, botanical garden, skate park, science museum and baseball stadium. Explore one of the park’s six playgrounds, take a stroll along the Flushing Bay Promenade or launch your model airplane. Flushing Meadows Corona Park has room for all your active pursuits!

The Unisphere is one of the main attractions of
Flushing Meadows Corona Park.Photo by Bruce Adler.

Forest Park
Located at Myrtle Ave., Union Turnpike, Park Lane South bet. Brooklyn-Queens County Line and Park Lane. With more than 500 acres to romp through, Forest Park offers trails for horseback riding and walking or jogging. The Bandshell, originally constructed in 1898, and reconstructed in 2010, serves as a venue for musical performers; including Sunday afternoon appearances by the Queens Symphony Orchestra.

Kissena Park
Located at Fresh Meadows Ln., Kissena Blvd., between Oak Ave., Underhill. and Booth Memorial Ave. This quaint refuge in Flushing is packed with recreational opportunities. In the early morning, it’s a prime spot for bocce, tennis or Tai Chi. Then, in the afternoon, golfers head to the Kissena Park Course and cyclists tackle the Velodrome on Booth Memorial Avenue and Parsons Boulevard. Kissena Lake was refurbished several years ago and now the looping path around it is often filled with joggers, walkers and fishermen.

Jamaica Bay Park
This 9,000-acre bird sanctuary is known for some of best bird-watching on the eastern seaboard. A one-and-a-half mile trail weaves through the salt marshes; the wildlife refuge is part of the Gateway National Recreation Area.

Juniper Valley Park
The park is located at Juniper Blvd. between Lutheran Ave., 71 St. and Dry Harbor Rd. It became part of the park system after the city acquired it to settle a tax dispute with Arnold Rothstein, most famous for accusations that he rigged the 1919 World Series. The 55-acre plot of land earned its name from the nearby Juniper Valley Swamp and, in the early 1940s, the bog was transformed into a recreational destination with new fields and paths. Today, the Juniper Park Civic Association maintains the park and lobbies for its needs.

Playgrounds:

Playground for all Children in Flushing Meadows Corona Park
Bay Terrace Playground (PS 169)
Bellaire Playground (PS 135)
Bulova Park (Moser Playground)
Dry Harbor Playground
Francis Lewis Playground
Glendale Playground
Linden Park (Park of the Americas)
London Planetree Playground
Marconi Park
Painters Playground (PS 174) (Mount Playground)
Police Officer Nicholas DeMutiis Playground
Queensbridge Park
Sandpiper Playground in Rockaway Beach
Schneiderman Playground (PS 232) (Linden Woods)
Smokey Oval
Sobelsohn Playground
Utopia Playground
Windmuller Park (Doughboy Plaza)

OUTDOOR POOLS:

Astoria
19th Street and 23rd Drive
(718) 626-8620
(718) 626-8623

Fisher
99th Street and 32nd Avenue
(718) 779-8356

Liberty
173rd Street and 106th Avenue
(718) 657-4995

OUTDOOR TRACKS:

Astoria Park
Astoria South and 18th Street

Forest Park
Myrtle Avenue and Woodhaven Boulevard
half-a-mile bike track.

Kissena Park
Half-a-mile bike track
160th Street and Booth Memorial Boulevard

Windmuller Park
39th Drive and 52nd Street

Juniper Valley Park
Juniper Boulevard and 71st Street
Astoria Athletic Field
2nd Street, 26th Avenue and East River

Liberty Park
Colden and Juniper Streets.
173rd Street & 105th Avenue

DOG RUNS:

Cunningham Park : 193rd Street between Aberdeen Road and Radnor Road
Gantry Park Dog Run, Center Boulevard and 46th Road
Jackson Heights Canine Recreation Wonderland, 35th Avenue and 69th Street, Jackson Heights
K-9 Dog Run (Forest Park): Park Lane South and 85th Street
Little Bay Dog Run: Cross Island Parkway between Clearview Expressway and Utopia Parkway
Murray Playground: 21st Avenue & 45th Road (southeastern side of the park)
Underbridge Dog Run: 64 Avenue/ 64 Road on Grand Central Parkway
Veteran’s Grove: Judge Street and Whitney Avenue
Windmuller Park (Doughboy Plaza): Woodside Avenue, 54th and 56th Streets

BARBEQUE AREAS:

Alley Athletic Field: Union Turnpike & Winchester Boulevard
Alley Pond Park: Winchester Boulevard & Grand Central Parkway
Brookville Park: Brookville Boulevard & South Conduit Avenue
Cunningham Park: 193rd Street & Union Turnpike
Flushing Meadows Corona Park: Jewel Avenue & Van Wyck Expressway (Meadow Lake)
Forest Park: Woodhaven Boulevard & Forest Park Drive
Springfield Playground: 147th Avenue & Springfield Boulevard (Behind Park House)

Cricket is a fixture at Baisley Pond Park. Photo by Shiek Mohamed.

CRICKET FIELDS:

Baisley Pond Park: North Conduit Avenue & Baisley Boulevard
Baisley Park South: 150th Street & 134th Avenue
Kissena Corridor Park: Peck Avenue & Underhill Avenue
Cunningham Park: Tennis Horace Harding Expressway & Grand Central Parkway
St. Albans Park: Merrick Boulevard, 173 Place, Sayers Avenue

MAJOR PARKS:

Alley Pond Park
Astoria Park
Baisley Pond Park
Cunningham Park
Crocheron Park
Edward Byrne Park
Flushing Meadows Corona Park
Forest Park
Francis Lewis Park
Kissena Park
Herman A. MacNeil Park
Highland Park
Idlewild Park
Jacob Riis Park
Queensbridge Park
Rockaway Community Park
Roy Wilkins Park
Socrates Sculpture Park
Springfield Park

RECREATION CENTERS:

Al Oerter Recreation Center
131-40 Fowler Ave.
Flushing, NY 11355
Center Managers: Ken Conyers and John Falzon
Deputy Center Manager: Janet Premus, David Deas
Phone: (718) 353-7853
Fax: (718) 353-7687
Cross Streets: Fowler Avenue and College Point Boulevard.

Flushing Meadows Corona Park Pool & Rink
125-40 Roosevelt Ave
Flushing, NY 11355
Phone: (718) 271-7572
Cross Streets: Avery Avenue and College Point Boulevard

Lost Battalion Hall Recreation Center
93-29 Queens Blvd.
Rego Park, NY 11374
Center Manager: Angela Elie
Deputy Center Manager: Tammy Mitchell
Phone: (718) 263-1163
Fax: (718) 520-5366
Cross Streets: 62nd Avenue and 62nd Road

Louis Armstrong Community Center
33-16 108 St., Corona, NY 11368
Center Manager: Gina Lewis
Phone: (718) 651-0096
Fax: (718) 446-0156
Cross Streets: Northern Boulevard and 108 Street

Roy Wilkins Recreation Center
177th Street & Baisley Boulevard
Jamaica, NY 11434
Center Manager: Lynn Delossantos
Deputy Center Manager: Dawn Whitfield
Phone: (718) 276-8686
Fax: (718) 276-8690
Cross Streets: Baisley and Merrick Boulevards

Sorrentino Recreation Center
18-48 Cornaga Ave.
Far Rockaway, NY 11691
Center Manager: Chaleene Nash
Deputy Center Manager: Shannon Montgomery
Phone: (718) 471-4818
Fax: (718) 471-1819
Cross Streets: Cornaga Avenue and Beach 19th Street

–Sources: New York City Department of Parks, Queens Borough President’s Office, wirednewyork.com, John Roleke, about.com.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>