New Events in 16 Sycamores

BHA President Howard Kolins is encouraging members to brainstorm new events for Sixteen Sycamores Park in Boerum Hill for 2010.

Could a new comfort station and several new events in a tiny downtown park be coming to Boerum Hill this year?

That is the plan that Boerum Hill Association (BHA) members Daughtry Carstarphen and Hannah Mason are pushing.

Both women are staunch advocates and leaders of a friends group for 16 Sycamores Park, a small pocket park on the corner of Schermerhorn Street and Third Avenue.

The park already has two separate play areas with slides, climbing equipment, handball courts, two water fountains, sprinklers and swings, but no comfort station. The BHA has been working with former Councilmember David Yassky, Community Board 2, Borough President Marty Markowitz and the City Parks Department to secure $1 million to build one. With the funding earmarked from Borough Hall and the Parks Department, but not secured, the Friends of Sixteen Sycamores Park group is set to take up the mantle of advocacy in the coming year.

To raise the profile of the park and its need for capital improvements, the Boerum Hill Association has been brainstorming a series of events to put in the park once the weather gets warmer.

At a February BHA meeting, members proposed one event per month starting in May, which could include a spring cleanup day, kids mural drawings, movie nights in the summer months, a water celebration, and a pumpkin festival in the fall.

“It is an underutilized park and it is a nice park,” said BHA President Howard Kolins. “The idea is to bring visibility to the park. The park’s image is more tarnished than its reality. We’re hoping to draw more people to it.”

Kolins is also planning to reach out to Fort Greene organizations and residents in nearby condominium buildings who might have young children in order to get them involved in event planning.

“It’s not everybody’s first destination,” said Kolins, who noted that many parents and nannies walk all the way to Cobble Hill Park instead of utilizing closer Boerum Hill sites. “There’s not much activity or space for the kids in this community.”

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