Parade Ground

The Daily Plant : Monday, October 29, 2001


Photo by Spencer (Flasher) Tucker

To the human eye, Van Cortlandt Lake may look healthy, but people aren’t the only ones a waterbody serves. The lake should be a habitat for birds, bugs, fish, and plants. In eighteen months time, it will be. The Bronx’s largest lake will be dredged and restored to its original, healthy depth of nine to fourteen feet. For this work, Parks is using a hydraulic dredge that is designed to remove only sludge no fish or other wildlife. The dredging will not disrupt park users’ enjoyment of the landscape. Visitors may sit by the lake, fish off its edge, or walk its perimeter. Most importantly, the waste from the lake (five feet of sediment)will become the topsoil for two reconstructed soccer fields. Thus within this one project, Parks will recycle materials.

The sediment will travel through 3,800 feet of aboveground pipe to the Parade Grounds 1.4 miles away and will not interrupt any of the walkways or cross-country trails. Nearly 50,000 cubic yards of sediment are expected to travel that route.

The project is being funded with $8.8 million from the Department of Environmental Protection and funds from the Intermodal Surface Transit Enhancement Act. It will include not only the dredging and field reconstruction, but also an extension of the Mosholu Greenway such that the trail leads directly into the park. The design for the dredging was named Project of the Week by Capital Projects the week of December 4, 2000. On October 22, 2001, work began. In this exciting reconstruction, Parks employs new, environmentally responsible technology and common sense re-use of materials. Wait till you see it when it’s finished.

June (Mainland) Eisland, Council Member; State Assembly Member Jeffrey Dinowitz; Commissioner Henry J. (StarQuest) Stern; Bill (Zorro) Castro, Bronx Borough Commissioner; Mary (Catalyst) Pazan, Chief of Management Services; Linda (Hickory) Dockeray, Van Cortlandt and Pelham Bay Park Administrator; Warren Kurtz, Deputy Director of Facilities, Planning at DEP; Jane (Catskill) Sokolow, Member of the Board of the Friends of Van Cortlandt Park; Mike Browne, Deputy Director of Design; and Steven DesNoyer, Project Manager were among those who assembled at the lakeside to flip the switch and start the dredging.


Golf has come of age in New York City and in the Bronx, and the Pelham Golf Course, a founding father, continues to flourish. On October 24, 2001 Parkies and friends wished this remarkable course a happy 100th birthday.

When it opened, the Pelham Golf Course was one of the first public golf courses in the country. The Van Cortlandt Golf Course, established six years earlier, was the first. These facilities helped alter the role of golf in New York City from an elite sport played only on private grounds to an accessible activity that can be enjoyed on public property. For the last two summers, Parks and the City Parks Foundation have administered free golf camps in which PGA professionals lead golf instruction at neighborhood parks in every borough. Through these camps, lessons and equipment were provided for thousands of New York City children.

Today, New York City’s twelve golf courses are receiving renovations that total $26 million. New irrigation systems, including 14 miles of pipe, are being added to every course. Revenue is now building a $35 million course in the Bronx’s Ferry Point Park. The 18-hole course, designed by Jack Nicklaus, will feature a driving range, a catering hall, and a restaurant, too.

For ten decades, Parkies have cared for the Bronx’s Pelham Bay Golf course, securing for it a long and healthy life. With the American Golf Corporation and Parks’ Revenue division, Bronx Borough Commissioner, Bill (Zorro) Castro, and Pelham Bay Park Administrator, Linda (Hickory) Dockeray and their staff oversee the facility. They were present, along with Commissioner Henry J. (StarQuest) Stern; Madeleine (Dolphin) Provenzano, Council Member; Joanne (Greenback) Imohiosen, Assistant Commissioner; Victoria Kikis, Northeast Regional Manager for Special Projects of the American Golf Corporation; Ron (Lifeguard) Lieberman, Director of Concessions; and Jill (Mainsail) Mainelli, Director of Community Resources, at the birthday party on Wednesday. At the end of the ceremony, Commissioner Stern rang the centennial bell that sent the guests out on the green for a round of golf.


(Monday, October 31, 1988)


Bronx children looking for fun places to play can add two playgrounds to their list—the Agnes Haywood and Cedar Playgrounds, both restored and reopened by Mayor Koch, Bronx Borough President Fernando Ferrer, Commissioner Stern, local residents and students at separate ceremonies on Friday.


"I will be the gladdest thing under the sun!
I will touch a hundred flowers and not pick one."

Edna St. Vincent Millay (1892-1950)

Directions to Parade Ground

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