Anxious for the chance to indulge your id and scamper down the middle of NYC streets without consequence? From 7am to 1pm on the first three Saturdays in August, a seven-mile stretch of Park Avenue, from the Brooklyn Bridge to Central Park, will be a vehicle-free zone. And this year, a giant water slide has been added to the mix. This year's Summer Streets welcomes pedestrians, cyclists and scooter-rollers to loaf around without fear of oncoming traffic. Visitors can also enjoy an array of free activities along the route, perfect for the “structured fun” types. A detailed schedule can be found on the Department of Transportation's website. Here are the activities not to miss:
Vita Coco Beach featuring Slide the City This Foley Square rest stop is sponsored by a company that produces coconut water, which will be doled out to parched guests. Visitors are also free to relax under palm trees or inside the so-called “misting station.” But the crown jewel is a massive 270-foot blow-up waterslide. But don’t expect to be spontaneous: Riders much register in advance to slide down it.
Free fitness At the Soho rest stop, try your hand at free group fitness: yoga, dance fusion and aerobics are all on the docket. For those already exercising on two wheels, a gratis bike repair station is also available.
Artsy-fartsy options At the Astor stop, revelers are encouraged to take part in an arts and crafts workshop hosted by the Department of Design and Construction. Come ready for a challenge—one of the activities involves creatively tackling waterfront resiliency (which may be a bit more complicated than macaroni necklaces). For kids and novices, supplies for simpler sculpture, painting and other crafts are on-hand, too.
Walking tours A diverse sampling of walking tours are available in local neighborhoods. Do-gooders will want to check out a tour of Manhattan’s humanitarian initiatives, while HGTV fanatics may prefer the “Gilded Age Splendor” tour on the Upper East Side. Other tours focus on specific parts of buildings near Park Avenue: one zeros in on fabulous lobbies and another acquaints you with the best facade clocks.
RECOMMENDED: Guide to Summer Streets
Here's the full route map: