Must-See Prospect Park
by Heather Liang, 10/02/2013
Long Meadow. Photo: Will Steacy
Fun in the Sun
One of the greatest draws of New York City's parks is the ability to lie out on a big lawn, stare up at the sky and pretend you're miles away from the world's largest metropolis. There is no better place to do this than in the Long Meadow, a nearly one-mile-long span of open space that runs most of the length of Prospect Park West, from Grand Army Plaza to the start of Prospect Park Southwest. The Long Meadow was once home to grazing sheep and games of lawn tennis and croquet; today it serves as a place for relaxing, having a picnic, sunbathing and playing sports. In the summer, the Long Meadow hosts a free concert by the New York Philharmonic. Another open space designed for relaxing is the Nethermead—located at the center of the park and attracting dog walkers, Frisbee players and others with its green hills. Visitors often stumble upon the Nethermead while visiting nearby attractions, like the Ravine and Audubon Center, giving it the feeling of being an undiscovered rolling meadow deep in the forest. If sitting around isn't for you, spend your day relaxing at Prospect Park Lake, one of the more popular places to fish in NYC. The 55-acre lake features a variety of fish, including carp, golden shiner, pumpkinseed and a great concentration of largemouth bass. The fishing here is catch-and-release only and requires a permit for those 16 and older. See more of nature's beauty at the peninsula, which juts out onto the lake and attracts geese, mallards and cormorants that feed along the shoreline. Dog owners should check out Dog Beach (between the pools just east of Long Meadow, rougly parallel to 8th street), a stretch of water in the park where Fido can hop around off-leash and cool down during the warmer months.