Important Parks Department Service Changes Due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Updated: Tuesday, September 8 at 9:00 a.m.

The World Health Organization has declared the COVID-19 disease, known as the coronavirus, a pandemic. During this time, we ask that all park goers use additional precautions to protect their health and safety and that of those around them.

At this time, City parks are open. We ask that all park goers take extra precautions to stay healthy and safe. Please wear face coverings and maintain at least 6 feet of distance between yourself and others when outside and avoid congregating in groups. 

Our park restrooms are open. We are cleaning our restrooms daily with appropriate cleaning products to ensure that they are being fully disinfected. 

Our city playgrounds are open. For public safety, please wear a face covering and maintain at least six feet of distance between each child not in the same household. Playgrounds are cleaned daily, however, play equipment is not sterilized. Please stay home if you or your child feels sick, and wash your hands frequently, including before and after using play equipment.

Fields and courts are open. Participants should continue to wear face coverings, follow social distancing protocols and avoid participating in high-contact games, such as football and pick-up basketball.

For more information about coronavirus and a guide on how to stay safe, please visit http://nyc.gov/coronavirus, or text COVID to 692-692 to receive regular SMS texts with the latest news and developments from Notify NYC.

Service Changes and Cancellations

Many events being held in parks by outside groups are being canceled or rescheduled. Before attending, please check with the organizing group to confirm.

COVID-19 Testing

Free COVID-19 testing is now available in New York City at more than 100 locations across the city. Visit the City's COVID-19 Testing page for more.

Face Coverings

New York City will continue face coverings in parks across the city free of charge through the social distancing period. For more information visit nyc.gov/facecoverings.

Facility Re-Openings

As our facilities re-open, we ask that patrons wear a face covering and maintain at least six feet of social distance between each household. Wash your hands frequently and wipe down equipment. Cover your coughs and sneezes, do not touch your face, and stay home if you feel sick.

  • City playgrounds are re-open.
  • Golf courses and driving ranges are re-open.
  • Skate parks are re-open.
  • Grilling areas are re-open.
  • Dog runs are re-open. Our off-leash rules still apply, but please note that the Center for Disease Control recommends that all dog owners keep their dogs on a leash and maintain at least six feet of distance from other people and animals.
  • Basketball, handball, tennis, bocce, and volleyball courts are re-open. Participants should continue to wear face coverings, follow social distancing protocols and avoid high-contact games, such as pick-up basketball.
  • City beaches re-opened for swimming through September 7. Beaches are now closed for swimming until summer 2021.
  • 15 of New York City's public pools were re-opened for swimming through September 7. Outdoor pools are now closed until summer 2021. Indoor pools remain closed to the public until further notice.
  • The High Line is re-open.
  • The Wildlife Conservation Society re-opened its zoos and aquarium to all guests.

Facility Closures

  • All NYC Parks Recreation Centers are closed to the public until further notice. We will be extending all memberships to our recreation center members to cover the length of time we are closed.
  • All City nature centers are closed until further notice.
  • The City's historic houses are working to safely reintroduce visitors to their museums.
  • The Swedish Cottage is closed.
  • The Arsenal Gallery is closed until further notice.
  • At this time, certain concessions remain closed, including amusement parks and carousels, indoor tennis facilities, and others. 
    • Farmers markets and gas stations are open. Customers must practice social distancing.
    • Most bicycle rental operations are open. Customers must practice social distancing.
    • Most golf courses and outdoor tennis concessions are open. Customers must practice social distancing,
    • Most snack bars & some restaurants are open for takeout or delivery, and some for outdoor dining. Customers must practice social distancing.
    • Stables remain operational for boarding and are now open to outdoor riding.

Programming Service Changes

  • NYC Parks is once again reviewing permit applications for special events. No permits will be granted for applications with an expected attendance of more than 50 people at any one time.
  • Field and court applications are now available. At this time, we are only reviewing and issuing permits for youth baseball, softball, non-contact lacrosse, cricket, soccer and flag football organizations and leagues. We will not be reviewing or issuing permits for adult organizations and leagues.
  • Tennis permits are not required for the 2020 season. If you have already purchased a permit, it will be valid through 2021.
  • At the discretion of each garden group, GreenThumb community gardens operating on NYC Parks property may open to licensed garden members as well as to members of the general public. Gardens are not required to host public open hours, and public events and gatherings inside gardens are still prohibited.
  • The Urban Park Rangers are offering free pop-up programs with limited attendance on a first come, first served basis.
  • Shape Up NYC is offering free outdoor programs with limited attendance.
  • Media Education instructors are offering free outdoor workshops with limited attendance.
  • The Arts, Culture & Fun series will host a series of outdoor workshops with limited attendance.
  • Many aquatics programs, including Learn to Swim and Lap Swim, are cancelled for the summer 2020 season.
  • Marinas, boatyards, and boat launches are open for personal use of vessels only. Vessel charters, rentals, and group activities or social gatherings are prohibited. Patrons must practice social distancing at all times and wear a face covering where social distancing is not possible. 

Visit our list of Virtual and Online Programs to find upcoming events presented by NYC Parks and our friends and partners.

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