Break Out the Boots, Dig Out the Sled, and Wish for Snow!
November 29, 2012

Break Out the Boots, Dig Out the Sled, and Wish for Snow!

With Thanksgiving behind us and wet snow having teased us this week, our children, Riley and Halina, are already asking when we can go sledding.  They are also asking when they’ll have off from school again—having gotten so accustomed to it since Hurricane Sandy—and our answer is: “Hopefully not at all!” The February school break has already been shortened to just two days, the 18th and 19th, to make up for the week missed following the storm. 

Our friends and family outside the city are often surprised by the fact that we sled as much as we do.  Indeed, during the east coast’s lone significant snowfall last winter, we hosted cousins from Plainsboro, New Jersey, who enjoyed their first-ever sledding experience, across the street from where we live in Morningside Heights. Indeed, Plainsboro is appropriately named for its flat landscape, while Morningside Heights has its share of hills.

We’ve made a list of sledding possibilities in all five boroughs—next we’ll be Googling hot cocoa spots to visit afterward! (Recommendations are welcome.)

Bronx: Ewen Park
Ewen Park at West 232 Street and Riverdale Avenue is a magnificent hill, as the hundreds of steps to ascend it might suggest. This popular sledding spot is great for older kids and young-at-heart adults.  It draws a diverse crowd, as it is situated between the very different Kingsbridge and Riverdale neighborhoods. 

Brooklyn: Fort Greene Park
Military forts are built on high elevations for obvious reasons. It is unsurprising that Fort Greene Park—organized around space used during the American Revolution and the War of 1822—contains a number of great sledding hills. Bounded by Myrtle Avenue, Cumberland Street, and DeKalb Avenue, Fort Greene has four hills to choose from, and a natural incline makes for a lot of fun for everyone from adults to the youngest city-dwellers. You can enter at Willoughby Avenue or DeKalb Avenue.

Manhattan: Riverside Park
Riverside Park North is home to one of the greatest sledding hills in Manhattan. To get there, enter the park at 116th Street and follow the sound of shrieks and cheers. Descend the sweeping staircase, get on your sled or snowboard, and look out below! (See Trip 18 in Outdoors With Kids New York City).

Queens: Kissena Park
It isn’t often that you can visit an arboretum during a break from sledding, but Kissena Park offers just that opportunity. A good hill is on the east side of the lake; enter the park at Metcalf Avenue and 164th Street. The weeping willows that surround the lake are particularly gorgeous when shrouded in snow.

Staten Island: Cloves Lake Park
If you didn’t get to the dollar store before all the saucers sold out, Cloves Lake Park gives you another wintertime option: skating on its outdoor rink. Lockers and skates are available for a small fee.  If you do have a sled, you’re in luck: The hills here abound. This large park—home to many impressively large and old trees—is bounded by Forest Avenue, Victory Boulevard, Clove Road, Brookside Avenue, and Royal Oak Road. 

What are the great sledding spots in your neighborhood?

 

 

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