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NYC parks projects vie for $20,000 in grant funding

New Yorkers have until April 30 to cast their vote.

The Study the Stars program at Flushing Meadows

The Study the Stars program at Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Queens is among three projects competing for $20,000 in grant funding from the National Recreation and Parks Association. Photo Credit: Linda Rosier

Three New York City park programs are competing for $20,000 in grant funding and it’s up to you to decide who wins.

The Meet Me at the Park Earth Day initiative, launched by the National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA) and the Walt Disney Company in 2014, aims to improve parks by funding programs that inspire healthy living, connect children with the outdoors and offer access to sports.

A total of 15 cities across the country are participating in this year’s contest, including New York City, San Francisco, Seattle and Philadelphia.

Each city has proposed three projects that qualify by Meet Me at the Park’s standards. The project with the most votes in each city will receive a $20,000 grant.

In New York, this year’s contenders include:

- The Study the Stars program at Flushing Meadows Corona Park, which would offer child-focused activities like star-gazing, overnight camping trips and other astronomy-related field trips.

- The Cricket in the Parks program, which would teach children the basics of the sport and set up a youth league at several parks in the city.

- The Learn to Ride Bike Rodeo, which would teach children how to ride and maintain a bike at five parks, as well as provide free helmets.

This is the final week of voting for the contest, which ends April 30. Voters can also nominate a city or town that was not included in the contest to be given a $20,000 grant for park improvements.

"NYC Parks is excited and grateful to have three of our proposed public programs considered for the Meet Me in the Park grant from Disney. Our parks thrive when unique activities like these are brought into parks for all New Yorkers to enjoy for free," Emily Chase, NYC Parks assistant commissioner for public programs, said. 

Votes can be cast online at The winners will be announced on June 1 and the projects will launch this summer.


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