FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, May 10, 2019
NYC PARKS CELEBRATES $2.6 MILLION IN IMPROVEMENTS TO PICNIC AND PERFORMANCE AREA IN CUNNINGHAM PARK
Queens Borough Parks Commissioner Michael Dockett today joined Borough President Melinda Katz, Council Member Barry Grodenchik, and State Senator John Liu to celebrate the reconstructed performance space and picnic area in Cunningham Park.
“Cunningham Park offers everything from ballfields to biking paths,” said Borough Commissioner Michael Dockett. “We’re thrilled to have upgraded this picnic area, so that now visitors can enjoy a better space to grab a bite in between activities, or catch a puppet show at our new performance space. Many thanks to Borough President Katz and Council Member Grodenchik for their support of this treasured greenspace in eastern Queens.”
“Cunningham Park is one of our borough’s most beloved parks, so it was my pleasure to join with the de Blasio administration and Councilmember Grodenchik in funding these important improvements that will greatly enhance the experience of parkgoers,” said Queens Borough President Melinda Katz. “The reconstructed picnic area, performance space and walking oval will make Cunningham Park an even more attractive place for families to see a show, enjoy a picnic and get some exercise in the fresh air.”
“It is a great pleasure to join Queens Borough President Melinda Katz, State Senator John C. Liu, and Queens Parks Commissioner Michael Dockett to cut the ribbon on the performance space and reconstructed picnic area in Cunningham Park,” said Council Member Barry S. Grodenchik. “These long-awaited amenities only enhance what is already a world-class park. I thank Mayor Bill de Blasio and Borough President Melinda Katz for the funding that they allocated to Cunningham Park for these projects.”
“The Cunningham Park renovation has long-been in the works; congratulations to the NYC Parks Department, Borough President Melinda Katz and Councilmember Barry Grodenchik for all of the hard work. This is what I hope will be the first of many groundbreaking and ribbon-cutting celebrations to come in our northeastern Queens parks,” said Senator John Liu.
This project reconstructed the picnic area in Cunningham Park. New barbecue grills, accessible picnic tables, paving, landscaping and plantings enhance the area. The walking oval, which was previously deteriorated, has been fully reconstructed, with new fitness equipment and mile markers along the pathway. Several staircases were also reconstructed for safe access. The performance space, sometimes used as an outdoor classroom, was updated to be an area for intimate performances and a variety of outdoor activities.
This project was funded by allocations from the City Council ($875,000), Borough President Katz ($1.175 million) and Mayor de Blasio ($572,000) for a total of $2.6 million. Construction began in June 2017 and the area was re-opened to the public in September 2018.
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 Eastern Queens greenspace has developed into headquarters for countless athletic leagues, animals, playmates, and barbecue enthusiasts.