Tony Dapolito Recreation Center


Monday, February 2, 2009
No. 006

The New York City Department of Parks & Recreation wants to hear what Parks means to you! We are asking for the help of creative New Yorkers in suggesting who—or what—should be the official mascot of Parks.

“Parks & Recreation is seeking the assistance of all New Yorkers in creating our new mascot,” said Commissioner Adrian Benepe. “In the grand tradition of Mr. Met and Smokey the Bear, we’re looking for an iconic character to symbolize New York City’s parks. From daffodils to majestic oaks, from baseball to surfing, there is plenty in our 29,000 acres of parkland to inspire.”

Anyone who is interested in submitting a concept can upload their original artwork and a description to the Parks website, Designs must be able to be turned into a costume that can be worn by an adult. There may be some creative adjustments to the original submissions due to accommodations made for the human body.

Students from Parks’ Afterschool Program in all five boroughs will play an integral role in this important citywide search. With some help from our Afterschool staff, the students have been putting their pencils to paper and preparing their own mascot ideas to be entered in the search. On January 31st, ten students from the Tony Dapolito Recreation Center shared their drawings with the Commissioner. A special panel of select students from this program will review all suggestions and make their final recommendations directly to Commissioner Benepe.

The Parks Afterschool Program seeks to enhance communities and enrich the lives of children in the City of New York by providing safe, supportive, and structured environments that support overall health and well-being. At 35 locations throughout the city, Parks Afterschool offers quality educational, recreational, and cultural programs that promote the social, physical, intellectual, and emotional development of children and youth.

Parks has had several unofficial mascots in the past, including former Commissioner Henry Stern’s dog, Boomer, and Professor Gingko, but this will be the first official Mascot search open to the public.

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Park Information

Directions to Tony Dapolito Recreation Center

Know Before You Go

Recreation Centers
Tony Dapolito Recreation Center

Tony Dapolito Recreation Center is closed until Spring 2024 due to structural issues found during an construction project on the center’s exterior and is currently being addressed and rectified.

Outdoor Pools
Tony Dapolito

The outdoor pool at Tony Dapolito Recreation Center is currently closed due to construction. Visit our Capital Project Tracker for updates on the project's progress.

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