Joyful and chaotic in the Williamsburg/Greenpoint nexus. McCarren can get crowded but for good reason - it’s large and well-situated and has probably the best water area of any park in north Brooklyn. It has two large structures with room for scooters and bikes in between, but each of the larger areas has smaller sections for even smaller kids. There are a lot of things to climb on, and multiple banks of swings. Lots of benches and trees for shade, too. And celebrity sightings! The only downside are the constant peddlers honking their horns to sell you water or ice cream.
I’m old enough to remember when the McCarren pool was dried out and used as a concert venue. Now we take our toddler to the playground here.
This playground is a great place to bring kids because it’s large and has a variety of basic equipment. The toddler side has good platforms for climbing with stairs and even a very small single platform and slide that is great for learning.
One piece of equipment in this section has a wasp nest, but otherwise it’s a great place to play.
The side of the playground designed for older kids has the same pieces of equipment plus a few higher platforms and ladders.
The stopped up water fountain creates a messy puddle on one side, but otherwise the actual water feature is separate and easy to avoid. It’s a huge space though and great for running around, although the sprayers are older and concrete.
This is a great workhorse playground that can handle lots of kids. Not everyone is well supervised though, and the big size makes it hard to observe the whole playground at once.
I once saw Kiernan Caulkin pushing his daughter on the toddler swings. We had both just come from the farmers market. It was a bit different than a few years earlier when he and his brothers were hanging at Union Pool.
Vincent V. Abate was a local activist and community board member and business owner who manufactured carbonated beverages.