Heckscher Ballfields are surrounded by views of the midtown skyline and the rustling of mature trees, kept strong and healthy by the Conservancy’s expert staff.
At the time that the Park was constructed in the 1850s, different types of ball games were flourishing across American cities. Park designers Calvert Vaux and Frederick Law Olmsted believed ball playing was too niche an interest and Park visitors would be better served by expansive fields to gaze upon, rather than play on. However, a few hours each week, the fields were opened to boys playing ball, a privilege given as a reward for good grades and good attendance at school. Adults did not play at Heckscher Ballfields until the 1920s.
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