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For avid runners and beginners alike, New York City offers a wide range of places to hit the pavement, from its iconic bridges to green trails nestled in the city’s parks. The scenic routes provide unbeatable views of the river and skyline that can keep you motivated to keep going when you’re ready to give up. Ahead, we round up the 10 most iconic spots to go for a run in the city, fit for regular marathoners, treadmill-devotees looking for a change of scenery, and total newbies.
Lace up those sneakers…
All images courtesy of Daniel Avila / NYC Parks
Throughout April, the city’s parks will celebrate the 200th birthday of Frederick Law Olmsted, the landscape architect whose visionary work on Central Park, Prospect Park, and many other public parks helped influence the future of urban green space design. The Parks Department will be teaching New Yorkers about Olmsted’s influence on urban design with an exhibition at the Arsenal Gallery, tours led by the Urban Park Rangers, and much more.
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Photo credit: Chadwick Creative Arts; Courtesy of the Prospect Park Alliance
A new food and drink concession is headed to Brooklyn’s Backyard this spring. The Prospect Park Alliance on Wednesday announced Park Slope’s Winner will open a new cafe on the lower level of Prospect Park’s Picnic House, a charming Colonial Revival-style building in the park’s Long Meadow. Offering baked goods, sandwiches, beverages, and picnic meals, Winner will serve parkgoers through December. Service will begin with breakfast and additional hours will be added weekly until Memorial Day when the cafe’s regular hours of operation will be 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
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Rendering of the Sensory Garden and Rustic Arbor. Image courtesy of Prospect Park Alliance
On Thursday, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the allocation of $40 million to restore Prospect Park’s Vale. This funding is the largest in the history of Prospect Park Alliance, the non-profit organization that manages the park. The Vale, also known as the “Vale of Cashmere,” is a 26-acre portion of the park’s northeast corner known for its breathtaking foliage.
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While our tiny apartments and fire escapes may not always be the greatest spots to host a barbecue, the city’s parks provide some of the best places to dine on hamburgers and hot dogs this holiday. Ahead, 6sqft rounded up 15 of the best NYC parks to host outdoor barbecues, from old standby Prospect Park to less-known locales like Staten Island’s Clove Lakes Park.
Find out the best BBQ spots in your neighborhood
Photos by Paul Martinka for the Prospect Park Alliance
After being closed to the public for nearly seven years, the historic Concert Grove Pavilion in Prospect Park reopened this week following a restoration. Designed in 1874 by Calvert Vaux, who co-designed the Brooklyn park with Frederick Law Olmsted, the stunning structure features colorfully painted wood ceilings and iron columns, ornate wooden trim, and a star-patterned stained-glass dome.
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Birdwatching in Prospect Park, courtesy of the Prospect Park Alliance on Flickr
With hundreds of parks and over 500 miles of waterfront, New York City is an excellent place for bird watching. The five boroughs serve as a temporary and permanent home to over 400 species of bird, thanks to both habitat diversity and location on the Atlantic Flyway, the route birds follow during migrations. From Pelham Bay Park in the northeast Bronx down to Great Kills Park on the South Shore of Staten Island, there is no shortage of birding activities in New York. With spring migration underway, we’ve rounded up the best places to find feathered friends throughout the city, most of which are accessible via public transportation. For guided bird watching tours and walks, check out events from NYC Parks, NYC Audubon, and the Linnaean Society of New York.
Full list ahead
Photo of Owl’s Head Park in Bay Ridge courtesy of NYC Parks/ Daniel Avila
Sledding has long been a New York City pastime during the long winter months, thanks to the many hills and slopes found in parks across the five boroughs. With an already impressive season of snow upon us, it’s the perfect chance to escape your apartment and get some fresh air and winter fun. Ahead, find the best places to go sledding in every borough, from scenic Sunset Park in Brooklyn to the natural rolling hills of Manhattan’s Inwood Hill Park.
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Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Arch lighting design test in 2019; Photo courtesy of Jordan Rathkopf/ Prospect Park Alliance
Plans to renovate Brooklyn’s Grand Army Plaza were unveiled this week, the first major restoration of Prospect Park’s historic entrance in decades. The $8.9 million revamp focuses on the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Memorial Arch, including replacing the arch’s roof, cleaning and restoring the brick and stone structure, repairing the interior staircases, and adding modern lighting to the exterior. Surrounding plaza and landscape berms that frame the plaza will also be restored and new native trees and shrubs will be planted.
Photos by Paul Martinka
An original architectural element of Prospect Park that dates back to the 1860s has returned to Brooklyn’s backyard. Following a five-year restoration, the Endale Arch reopened to the public last week, with parts of its stunning design envisioned by park creators Frederick Olmsted and Calvert Vaux on display for the first time this century.
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