Bryant Park in New York City

by Denise Marie

Bryant Park is a beautiful acreage of green lawns and tree lined foliage located amid 40th and 42nd Streets and from 5th and 6th Avenue in midtown Manhattan. It is located directly behind the New York Public Library. This is one of the more popular spots in the city for millions of locals and tourists from all around the world that visit on a daily basis.

More than 900 people visit the park per acre daily. It offers several amenities for the entire family and was even awarded the title of “Best Bathroom in America” in 2002. The park is operated and managed by a private funding corporation; Bryant Park Corporation otherwise known as BPC. It was cofounded by Andrea Heiskell and Dan Biederman in 1980 and is the largest private management companies to fund a private park in the United States.

The main attraction is the lawn. It is a big expansion of grass and is the largest south of Central Park in Manhattan. Office workers are served lunch as well as a seating room offered for pedestrians to rest. Visitors are attracted to the many events that are held such as the Summer Film Festival, Fashion Shows, Ice Skating Rink and other major events.

History of the Park
It was back in 1686 when New York Colonial Governor Thomas Dongan designated the area where the park sits today as public space. Troops from the Battle of Long Island crossed the land in the 1700’s and in the beginning of the 1820’s the park was chosen as Potter’s Field. This was designated as a graveyard or cemetery for the poor. The bodies were then removed in 1840 and moved to Wards Island. Reservoir Square was the first site opened in 1847.

It wasn’t until 1884 when Reservoir Square was renamed after William Cullen Bryant. William Cullen Bryant was a well-respected and well known New York Evening Post editor and poet. Kiosks, facilities and terraces were added to the park in 1899.

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Things to do
A day in the park will never get boring as there are plenty of interesting things for the whole family to enjoy while visiting. Reading Room, Le Carrousel, Ping Pong, Citi Pond, Holiday Shops, Southwest Porch, The Grounds, Petanque, Chess and Backgammon, Bryant Park Games, Bryant Park Grill and Café, Yoga Classes, Language Classes, Birds in Bryant Park, Shopping and a full events calendar are all offered on a regular basis to take part in.

Visiting the Park
Bryant Park is open daily with hours varying. Management reserves the right to change hours due to weather and other unsafe conditions. For hours please visit the official website or contact the park. To reach Bryant Park by subway take the B, D, F or M train to the park or take the 7 over to 5th Avenue. Click here to read more on Bryant Park.

Rules and regulations are enforced to keep the park as clean as possible with clean smoke free air and free of litter. All visitors must obey by the regulations before entering the park.


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