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Heckscher Playground

heckscher playground


When Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux designed Central Park in the 19th Century, they designated this 10-acre meadow in the southwest corner of the Park as a "playground" — the term used to describe a versatile open meadow intended for games, sports and informal play. The oldest playground in Central Park, created in 1927, and the largest at 1.8 acres, Heckscher Playground includes a great variety of play features and spaces. Its primary entrance is the central breezeway of the newly restored Heckscher Building.

Age Groups:
Pre-school, School-age

The playground includes a shaded area with swings and slides; a multiuse area comprised of synthetic turf and safety surfacing; and a large, maze-like climber and water feature with tunnels, ramps and slides.

Water Feature:
Water flows from the highest point of the climber and down to elevated water channels, which children can walk through. The water ends at ground level in an area where a variety of water jets spray into the air. Younger children can cool off in a semi-enclosed area with a low and gentle spray.

Recent Reconstruction:
The Central Park Conservancy reconstructed Heckscher Playground in 2005 and the Heckscher Building in 2007.

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Get Involved with Central Park Playgrounds

The Playground Partners program was founded in 1991 to improve Central Park playgrounds. Funds raised go directly towards the preservation, care, and daily inspection of these cherished play spaces.

Additional Information

What: Playground
For: Families
Near: South End
Restrooms available


Mid-Park from 61st to 63rd Streets

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