Part 1 of our comprehensive three-part series explores Great Neck’s entertainment options
Most residents are familiar with the rich offerings of the Great Neck Park District (GNPD), while inhabitants of the villages not part of the district may be unfamiliar with the extensive amenities available to them. Part 1 of this three-part series will detail the GNPD, Part 2 will focus on parks in other Great Neck villages and Part 3 will highlight nearby Town of North Hempstead and Nassau County attractions.
This summer, the GNPD is offering a plethora of events, recreational options, educational programs and entertainment for both residents and nonresidents alike, including parks, sports, aquatics, live performances, movie screenings and special events for children.
A resident needs a park pass to register for any park district program or enter a park district facility. Nonresidents, including those from Great Neck Estates, Harbor Hills, Lake Success, Saddle Rock and University Gardens, can participate in Great Neck House classes and Parkwood Tennis programs when registration opens to nonresidents. Only residents with a current park pass may enter Steppingstone Park, though two guests are permitted per park pass. Passes are available at Great Neck House at 14 Arrandale Ave. or call 516-487-GNPD for additional information.
Allenwood Park has tennis courts that are open year round from 9 a.m. to dusk, a baseball/softball diamond, children’s playground and walking/biking path, where dogs are permitted on leashes.
Kings Point Park offers tennis courts from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. from May 15 to Oct. 15, four baseball/softball diamonds, two basketball courts, picnic tables, a children’s playground, barbecue grills, a soccer field, horseshoe pitching and walking trails, where dogs are permitted on leashes.
Memorial Field on Fairview Avenue offers a baseball/softball diamond, basketball court, children’s playground, soccer field, handball courts and 16 tennis courts from 9 a.m. to dusk starting on May 1. Eight courts close around Nov. 20; the remaining courts close around Dec. 15 or the first freeze.
Steppingstone Park has a children’s playground, wading pool, picnic tables, butterfly garden and a marina featuring a boat ramp, dock, fishing, kayaking, sailing and sailing school. A concert series is offered on Saturday and Sunday evenings from July Fourth through Labor Day weekend.
Village Green is home to a veterans’ memorial, gazebo, bandstand, walking course and the children’s all-inclusive PlayGarden with a butterfly garden. The rose garden, which was originally designed and created by renowned landscape architect Betrix Farrand in the late 1920s, sits on the western end of the park. Dogs are permitted on leashes.
Cutter Mill Park offers a basketball court, picnic tables and a playground.
Dog Park on Colonial Road has a dog obstacle course, water fountain and pens, plus picnic tables and a gazebo. Dogs must be licensed and registered annually at Great Neck House.
Firefighters Park on Grace Avenue has a firefighter-themed playground, children’s swings, picnic areas, a monument, gazebo and sitting areas.
Lakeville Park on Pembroke Avenue houses two half-basketball courts and a children’s playground.
Manor Park on Cumberland Avenue has a playground and aqua park.
Ravine Park offers a children’s playground, walking path and gardens.
Thomaston Park on Susquehanna Avenue has basketball courts, horseshoe pits, a children’s playground, checker/chess tables, a gazebo and sitting areas.
Upland Park on Bates and Soundview roads has basketball courts and a children’s playground.
Wyngate Park offers two half-basketball courts and two play areas.
Passive parks, including Creek Park/Daniel Jay Berg Memorial on Great Neck Road, Udalls Pond Park & Woodland Preserve on Beach Road and Wooleys Lane Park, don’t offer recreational facilities, but are quiet, natural, wildlife preserves for reflection and strolling.
Parkwood Family Aquatics Center
Only GNPD residents can purchase a pool membership, which enables them to register for aqua aerobics classes and children’s instructional swimming lessons.
Parkwood’s amenities include an Olympic-size main pool with a handicap-accessible ramp and water wheelchair, a diving area, lap lanes and shallow water areas; wading pool; intermediate pool; lazy river; water slide; interactive water feature; bathhouses with showers, lockers and family changing rooms; a lounge area; and snack bar.
The pool is open from 9:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. from June 29 to Aug. 25, and from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. through Sept. 2. The pool remains open on weekdays through Sept. 14, with Lazy River walking from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. and from 3 to 7 p.m. for all members.
Membership options include:
• Family: Two registered adults and all registered children under 25 living at the same residence, $420; children older than 25 need their own membership.
• Family of Two: Two registered adults or one adult (18+) and one child (under 18) living at the same residence, $340.
• Individual: Resident 13 and older, $240.
• Senior: Adult older than 65, $145.
• Adult 5-Day Pass: Registered adult can purchase once per season, $75; no guest privileges.
• Child 5-Day Pass: Registered children under 18 can purchase once per season, $70; no guest privileges.
• 10-Day Guest Pass: Members may buy this pass, $85; up to two guests a day.
• Special Discount: For GNPD active and retired members of the U.S. military.
Parkwood Tennis Center
Open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily, the four-court indoor facility is air conditioned in summer. Outdoor courts are reserved for lessons during warmer months, but hourly and seasonal court time can be reserved. Tennis lessons are available for children and adults at all levels, and team play and tennis camps run all summer. The Tennis Center also hosts Aceing Autism as part of the GNPD’s Therapeutic Programming.
Parkwood Recreation Center
All GNPD residents with a park card can enjoy arts and crafts; table games, such as ping-pong, pool and nok hockey; basketball; boxball; rock climbing (with a Wall Pass); gaga pit; tether ball and volleyball from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily through Aug. 25; each card holder can bring up to two guests.
Performances and Films
Steppingstone Waterside Theatre holds a performing arts series under the stars, overlooking the Long Island Sound, every Saturday and Sunday, plus two Thursdays, at 8 p.m. from July Fourth through Labor Day weekend. Highlights include concerts by the Gin Blossoms, Belinda Carlisle of the Go-Go’s and a Beatles tribute band, as well as a production of the hit musical Mamma Mia!
Village Green hosts concerts and performances, including by the Rotary Band on Wednesday evenings, on its newly renovated stages. Outdoor kid-friendly movies, including Mary Poppins Returns on July 25, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse on Aug. 8 and Aquaman on Aug. 22, will be screening on Thursdays at 6 p.m.
Each Sunday during summer, free family-friendly events are held in various parks throughout the GNPD, including Sunday Funday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on July 21 at Allenwood Park, the Beer & Wine Festival at 2 p.m. on July 28 at Steppingstone Park and the Fishing Derby at 9 a.m. on Aug. 4 at Steppingstone Marina, followed by Family Fun Day from 12 to 5 p.m.
The GNPD also provides family entertainment on Mondays at 6 p.m., including an animal show at Cuttermill Park on July 22, Jester Jim at Village Green on July 29, Plaza Productions’ Cinderella at Steppingstone Park on Aug. 5 and a marshmallow roast at Kings Point Park on Aug. 12.