Leif Ericson Park

The Daily Plant : Wednesday, May 23, 2007

A Playground Built For A Viking

Photo by Malcolm Pinckney

On May 15, Commissioner Adrian Benepe was joined by City Council Members Vincent Gentile and Sara Gonzalez, Community Board 10 District Manager Josephine Beckmann, and 4th graders and kindergarten students from P.S. 69 to break ground on $1.4 million in renovations at Leif Ericson Park in Brooklyn.

Thanks to this allocation, Parks is completely renovating the playground on the 8th Avenue side of Leif Ericson Park. The City Council allocated $1,185,000, including $1,040,000 from Council Member Gentile and $145,000 from Council Member Gonzalez. An additional $215,000 was funded by Mayor Bloomberg.

The playground will include new play equipment with a Viking Ship theme, in honor of the park’s namesake, the Norwegian explorer Leif Ericson. It will also include new swings, a synthetic turf volleyball area, basketball half-courts, game tables, and benches. A picnic area with accessible seating, lush perimeter gardens, trees and shrubs will be added for the enjoyment of all visitors.

This parcel of land was acquired from 1895 to 1897 and dedicated as a public park in 1925. During World War II, the U.S. Army occupied the property and it was rehabilitated by Parks in 1945.

The park is named for the Viking, Leif Ericson (c.960-c.1020), who is known as the first European to set foot on the North American continent, nearly 500 years before Christopher Columbus.

In keeping with the day's theme, the children in attendance wore Viking helmets while snacking on Swedish fish, Danish cookies, and Icelandic water.


In honor of Citywide Bike Month, the Parks Department has teamed up with Bike New York to present “Teach Your Child to Ride a Bike,” a free, fun program that allows parents to help their children safely learn to ride.

Parks staff and volunteers will be on hand at a park near you to help your child learn how to ride a bike. Bring your child, a bike, and a helmet for this free, fun event. The New York City Department of Transportation safety program will provide helmets for children who do not have one; however supplies are limited. This is a great way to get your child interested in one of the the healthiest and most exciting modes of transportation.

The program will be offered at the following locations on Monday, May 28 from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

- North Rochdale Playground: Baisley Blvd and Bedell St, Queens
- Behagen Playground: E. 166th St. and Union Ave, Bronx
- Commodore Barry Park: Flushing Ave and N. Elliott Place, Brooklyn
- Inwood Hill Nature Center: 218th St. & Indian Road, Manhattan
- Silver Lake: Victory Boulevard, Clove Road and Forest Avenue, Staten Island

“Teach Your Child to Ride a Bike” is sponsored by Parks & Recreation, the Department of Health, the Department of Transportation, Bike New York, and Transportation Alternatives. Pre-registration is required for this program. To register, parents must download the application from the Bike New York website (www.bikenewyork.org).


“Deeds, not words shall speak me.”

John Fletcher
(1579 – 1625)

Directions to Leif Ericson Park

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