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Clove Lakes Park

The Daily Plant : Thursday, December 6, 2001


In 80 years, Clove Lakes Park has acquired a skating rink and ballfields, and assumed the position of headquarters for the Staten Island Parks Department. At 80 years and 198 acres, Clove Lakes is an accomplished park.

But 80 is youthful compared to 300, the age of the park’s old tulip tree. And even that tree, the oldest on Staten Island, is young next to the local geography formed 20,000 years ago when a glacier deepened Clove Valley. 500 million years ago, heat and pressure altered rocks rich in magnesium and iron, and the serpentine rocks that are the spine of the island were formed. A birthday party on Sunday, December 2 celebrated the relatively youthful Clove Lakes Park and the ancient land on which it stands.

Clove Lakes Park might have been formed in 1897 when Frederick Law Olmsted, a co-designer of Central Park, advocated for the creation of public parkland there. But his recommendation was not heeded until 1921 when the City acquired the area. Since then, Clove Lakes Park has served its community as a meeting place, a slice of nature, and a sports arena, and it has served Parks as an administrative headquarters for the borough.

Young people at the birthday party, the next generation of park stewards and advocates, performed a variety of birthday songs and released ten doves, symbols of peace, into the air.

Commissioner Henry J. (StarQuest) Stern; Thomas (Richmond) Paulo, Staten Island Borough Commissioner; and George (Watchdog) Caputo, Chair of Community Board 1, offered birthday greetings to the park.

Read the original press release here.

Read the historical sign for Clove Lakes Park.


Another Parks birthday was celebrated Thursday, November 29. On that day, Parks’ first and only public library turned two. Commissioner Stern greeted guests at a birthday bash and called the library "an accomplished toddler."

Since its creation in October 1999, the library has acquired and catalogued 2,142 items and its collection continues to grow. The stacks hold internal documents—annual reports that date back to 1901, the rules of Central Park from as early as 1890, and the minutes of Parks meetings since 1884. The shelves are crowded with books and videos about New York history and architecture, urban studies, and biology, as well as the private collection of Robert F. Wagner, Jr..

Sara (Cedar Hill) Cedar Miller, Historian and Photographer for the Central Park Conservancy, offered a free lecture about Manhattan’s flagship park to Parkies and members of the public. Commissioner Stern noted, "As the library is above all a place for learning, I am pleased to mark its anniversary with a history lesson."

The library is also the base of operations for the historical signs program, Parks’ initiative to write the natural and social history of parks and park features. Within the library’s walls, more than 2,000 signs have been drafted under the leadership of Kate (Chama) Clark, Librarian and Historical Signs Coordinator.

Learn more about the Parks Library.


Over the next six months, the 245 participants in Parks’ indoor swim program will hone their skills for the borough cup in May. On Sunday, December 2, they swam in their first meet of the year, at St. John’s Recreation Center in Brooklyn. It was the center’s first time hosting a meet in their 25-yard pool. John (Neptunis) Hutchins, Director of Citywide Aquatics organized the event and St. John’s Manager Karen Gripper hosted it. The meet was the first of three High Point meets to be held this year.


(Thursday, December 15, 1988)


An opening reception sponsored by Parks and The Toy Center was held Tuesday night for the seventh annual Arsenal Gallery exhibition, "The Wreath: Interpretations." The exhibit explores the traditional holiday decoration as a ceremonial symbol, object of beauty and abstract form of art.


"Sweet is every sound,
Sweeter thy voice, but every sound is sweet;
myriads of rivulets hurrying through the lawn,
The moan of doves in immemorial elms
And murmuring of innumerable bees."

Alfred Lord Tennyson (1809-1892)

Directions to Clove Lakes Park

Know Before You Go

PlaygroundsSaturn Play Equipment

NYC Parks has removed slides in this park due to a manufacturer recall. The manufacture is currently working on an improved design and redesigned slides will be installed as soon as possible.

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