Long Island, NY - May 20, 2015 - As the summer season kicks off Memorial Day weekend with the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach and the opening of the swimming season this weekend, the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (State Parks) today outlined a range of construction projects moving ahead across Long Island under Governor Andrew M. Cuomo's NY Parks 2020 initiative.
"Long Island State Park visitors will see our parks undergo numerous improvements this year under the Governor's NY Parks 2020 revitalization plan," State Parks Commissioner Rose Harvey said. "Projects to build new playgrounds, create new park access, rehabilitate historic buildings, renew well-used facilities and more are taking place at parks all across New York State. While some of these projects will temporarily disrupt normal park usage, we ask visitors to be patient as these projects move forward to create enhanced experiences at Long Island's State Parks."
Under Governor Cuomo's leadership, New York State is making a historic commitment to improving and expanding access to outdoor recreation. The Governor's NY Parks 2020 program is a multi-year commitment to leverage $900 million in private and public funding for State Parks from 2011 to 2020. The Governor's 2015-16 Executive Budget allocates $110 million toward this initiative.
Jones Beach State Park
One of the most popular events in the State Park system all year, the 2015 Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach features an incredible array of military and civilian performers, who will take to the sky for two days of stunts and adventures. This year's show sees the return of the United States Air Force Thunderbirds as headliners. Also performing will be the US Army Golden Knight Parachute Team, Breitling Jet Team, Sean D. Tucker, John Klatt, Screamin Sasquatch, GEICO Skytypers, American Airpower Museum Warbirds, David Windmiller, and the Miss GEICO Speedboat.
The show will take place Saturday and Sunday, May 23 and 24 from 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. at Jones Beach State Park in Wantaugh. Parking is $10 per car. For more information, click here.
Additionally, the beaches at Jones Beach, Hither Hills, Robert Moses and Sunken Meadow State Parks and other select New York State Park lakes open for swimming on Saturday. Opening days and hours vary by park. From pristine lakes to Olympic-size swimming pools, New York State Parks abound with opportunities to swim in the summer months. To learn more about swimming at State Parks, including swimming safety tips, click here.
As part of the NY Parks 2020 Plan, Governor Cuomo has committed $65 million to restore Jones Beach State Park's historic grandeur and create new recreational facilities. At the Field 6 Bathhouse, a $2.9 million renovation project is underway. A rehabilitated comfort station is expected to open by Memorial Day weekend. The food and beverage area is expected to be completed this summer. Temporary food service will be set up with seating under tents on the patio area during construction.
The West Bathhouse is undergoing a $2.7 million project to restore interior space to its original historic design. Renovations to the food concession area are underway and will be completed this summer.
Design is underway on a project to create a new fresh food marketplace at the vacant site of the former Jones Beach Restaurant, as part of an $18 million transformation of the East Mall area. Construction is expected to begin late this year or early next year. Also in the East Mall area, construction will begin this fall on a high-ropes adventure course, with completion expected in summer 2016.
Other improvements taking place at Long Island State Parks this year include:
Sunken Meadow State Park
New playground facilities will be available this summer. At Field 4, a new playground is available, designed for children ages 2 - 5. An enlargement to the main playground area is under construction to be completed later this summer. Improvements to the golf course irrigation system will be completed this summer.
A $5.5 million renovation of the main bathhouse is underway, continuing through 2016.
Captree State Park
A project to upgrade and enlarge the playground will begin in the fall and be completed by summer 2016.
Connetquot River State Park Preserve
The Friends of Connetquot State Park Preserve partnered with State Parks to install a well to supply well water to the hatch house. This will supply a bio-secure supply water source to renew restocking of the Connetquot River. The Fish Hatchery will be open this fall.
Hallock State Park
State Parks expects to begin a $4.25 million project to construct a visitor center with comfort station and parking field to provide new public access to this so far undeveloped park. Construction is anticipated in the fall with completion next year.
Hither Hills State Park
A project to replace the East Section comfort station and shower house will be completed during the summer.A project to enlarge the playground is complete. Additional equipment was added for all ages and to make the playground ADA accessible.
Montauk Point State Park
A new playground will be completed by July 4.
Nissequogue River State Park
The next phase of demolition, remediation and park improvements at the site of former Kings Park Psychiatric Center facilities will continue through 2016.
Orient Beach State Park
Renovation of the bathhouse will be completed this summer.
Robert Moses State Park
A $1.7 million solar energy project to make the park energy neutral will begin this summer.
Valley Stream State Park
A project to expand the playground is complete. The park added additional equipment for ages 2 -5 and made it ADA accessible.
Wildwood State Park
The replacement of the E Section Comfort Station and Shower house will be completed this summer.