As 2022 draws to a close, we want to celebrate everything you’ve done to make this year remarkable! You made it possible for us to offer new delights and old favorites and welcome more than 3 million visitors to the park this year!
With your support, Van Cortlandt Park Alliance delivered 12 months of fresh programming, like our first ever Family Fun Day in Woodlawn, the inaugural Starlight Cinema summer movie series, and more live music than ever before. In partnership with Bronx Arts Ensemble and KRVC, local musicians performed everything from bachata to oompah on our clean, green lawns!
Friends… Old and New
With the help of our new pals at Courts of Dreams, we restored two basketball courts at Woodlawn playground. A couple of beloved legends from the New York Knicks – John Starks and John Wallace – joined us for the groundbreaking and ribbon-cutting ceremonies! The basketball courts are now in championship shape.
And, we reunited with a dear old friend. The New York Philharmonic returned to the park for the first time since 2019, with gorgeous music, perfect weather, and fireworks! More than 6,000 jubilant music fans turned out for the show, one of the biggest crowds on record.
Your Joy Is the Spark!
We love bringing you big events and giving you reasons to laugh and smile. Thanks to your generosity, we will continue to provide programming and grow our offerings each year.
In 2022, we welcomed folks from near and far to our second annual Juneteenth celebration. We held this year’s event on Monday, June 20, in honor of Juneteenth’s newly recognized federal holiday status. Van Cortlandt Park Alliance continues to host volunteer projects, beautifying the Enslaved African Burial Ground, and advocates for a proper memorial in that location.
This past year, we partnered with a local middle school on a pilot program to shine a light on the experience of the enslaved Africans and Indigenous people of Van Cortlandt Plantation. You can help us expand this program to reach even more students in 2023.
And speaking of students, through school programs and teen internship programs, Van Cortlandt Park Alliance reaches and teaches the next generation of environmental stewards with hands-on STEM (science • technology • engineering • math) learning in the park.
Our advocacy efforts have made Daylighting Tibbetts Brook a reality. The project, co-led by NYC Parks and NYC Department of Environmental Protection, is already being designed with community input. Soon, there will be plans for the daylit stream and adjacent Putnam Greenway extension!
VCPA also supports the day-to-day work of NYC Parks in keeping the park beautiful and well-maintained.
With your help, we can raise funds to hire seasonal maintainers who care for the woodland trails all summer and fall.
Climate change is affecting the park. Intense rain events happen more frequently, so our work is more important than ever… but each year it grows more difficult, as the city’s overall budget gets cut and fewer staff are hired.
To lighten the load, VCPA coordinates volunteer projects: repairing woodland trails, removing unwanted plants from the pond and forest, picking up trash, raking leaves, and planting native trees and plants.
More than 2,000 volunteers lent a hand this past year!
Woodland and aquatic restoration continue apace under the skilled direction of park staff. And, you’ve asked that more attention be paid to the baseball fields, soccer fields, tennis courts, and football turf. We hear you! Your generous donation will allow us to purchase tools and small equipment, and hire more seasonal staff to care for these important park assets.
Help us do more for YOU!
There is, of course, always more work to be done. Van Cortlandt Park is a vast expanse of parkland with trails, sports fields and courts, a skateboard park, 600+ acres of Forever Wild preserve, swimming pools, golf courses, and more. You deserve every inch of it to be sustained at the highest level, but with recent reductions in City funding, support from YOU, our amazing community, is even more necessary.
I continue to marvel at the allure of the park and I’m thrilled, every day, as I see the crucial role it plays in your lives. Whether you walk or run in the park every morning; drop your kids off for baseball or soccer practice in the afternoon; picnic on weekends; or come out for special events like Juneteenth or summer movies; we know the park is an essential part of your life… and something to celebrate all year.
Executive Director, Van Cortlandt Park Alliance
Park Administrator, NYC Parks
P.S. The park is really big. Our staff is really small. Only with your help can we grow our capacity, hire more staff, and take on projects to improve Van Cortlandt Park… for YOU! Please consider a gift to Van Cortlandt Park Alliance today securely online at vancortlandt.org/donate.
Your gift, no matter the size, will make a difference and help sustain the park.
Your gift to Van Cortlandt Park Alliance (VCPA) is a tax-deductible contribution.
Our federal tax identification number is 13-3843182. VCPA is a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization, IRS Section 170(b) (2) (iii) for both federal and state tax purposes.