Last Minute Details!

We will be cleaning up and preparing the carousel area and picnic area for the upcoming summer season. It will be a simpler project than previously thought but will still consist of a lot of work so come prepared to get your hands dirty.

We have 3 buses coming to the site that will be leaving from NY Cares' office - 214 West 29th Street, between 7th and 8th Avenues, in Manhattan. You're asked to arrive by 8:15am to register, and the buses will leave promptly at 9am. You will find tables set up on 29th St. where you will register for the day, get your t-shirt, etc., they will direct you to which bus will be coming to Forest Park and you will not have to check in again once you arrive at the site. At the end of the day, the buses will take you back to the 29th St. office, leaving Forest Park by no later than 3pm.

Take the J train Queens-bound (towards Jamaica Center) to Woodhaven Blvd. Exit near intersection of Woodhaven Blvd and Jamaica Ave. Walk North on Woodhaven Blvd towards the park, it's about 6 or 7 blocks (you can take the Q11 bus as well). Walk just past the FDNY Telegraph Station, turn left into the park on Forest Park Drive and walk toward the carousel and parking lot, a short walk into the park. PLEASE ALLOW A MINIMUM OF 45 MINUTES FOR THE TRAIN AND WALK TIME.

*For detailed directions from your home, please visit*

There is plenty of parking, a big parking lot actually, right in the exact area where we'll be. Please hopstop your own directions if you'll be driving on your own. You can use the intersection of Woodhaven Blvd and Forest Park Drive as your ending point.

Here is a map to the park for reference:

8:15am - (if taking the bus) - arrive at 29th St. location to register
9:00am - (if taking the bus) - bus leaves for Forest Park
9-9:30am - Volunteers arrive and check in
9:30am-12:30pm - Work at designated areas
12:30-1pm - Break for lunch
1-2:30pm - Finish project
2:30-3pm - Clean up and leave

As mentioned earlier, if you are taking a bus you will register before you get on the bus. All volunteers, whether you take the bus or come directly to the site on your own, will have a waiver to sign and collect your t-shirt. There will be Volunteer Information Forms available if you are interested in becoming a New York Cares volunteer.

Everyone is more than welcome to bring their own lunch and snacks. Sam will be ordering a lot of cheese pizzas and soda, if you're interested in partaking in pizza please bring $5 to help chip in, which Sam will collect when you arrive.

We're on our own for breakfast! Yikes. I would strongly suggest bringing a bottle of water as I'm not sure if water will be available at the site. Sam suggests wearing long pants - there shouldn't be any poison ivy but I'd wear long pants to be on the safe side. Also be sure to have sunscreen as we may be working in the sun for several hours. According to, the low is supposed to be 51 degrees and the high 67 degrees.


Project change!

I just found out the project has changed at the park. Instead of leveling out the mounds of soil along the access road, we will now be raking and cleaning the area around the carousel, and also mulching the picnic area, both are within proximity of each other. This is great news for the park, as they have not had an operator for the carousel in over a year (and hence has been dormant that entire time and will need a lot of sprucing up).

Also, regarding the bus situation, NYCares has confirmed 3 buses for us. The buses will leave from the NYCares office (214 West 29th Street btwn 7th/8th Ave) at 8:30am and will return to their office by 3pm. If you're interested in taking the bus, you will register for the day before you get on the bus so plan on trying to get to 29th St. by 8am.

The Forest Park Carousel holds some of the last surviving creations of master wood-carver Daniel Carl Muller. After emigrating from Germany in the 1880s, Muller settled in Philadelphia and opened D.C. Muller and Brother Co., which operated from 1903 to 1914. Muller crafted figures for twelve carousels in his lifetime; this carousel is one of only two that remain, with his fanciful interpretations of horses, unicorns, bears, and other menagerie animals. Muller worked with the Dentzel Company on the Forest Park Carousel, another historically renowned carousel maker. William H. Dentzel constructed the frame in 1890 and Muller carved the animals in 1903. The carousel was first operated in 1903 in Dracut, Massachusetts, then taken apart and stored for later use. (Read More...)

Take the $150 Challenge!

If each Hands On New York Day volunteer raises $150, New York Cares could provide $4.5 million in service to the community.

Take the $150 ChallengeWhat can New York Cares accomplish with $150?

* $150 enables us to serve 2,700 meals to the hungry and homebound.
* $150 gives 18 adult immigrants study materials to prepare for the U.S. citizenship exam.
* $150 grants books and supplies to 23 children in an Early Morning Reading program.
* $150 provides one low-income student with one-on-one tutoring for an entire year.

Imagine what we can do with $250 or $500!

As a thank you for all your hard work, everyone who raises at least $150 by Friday, May 7, will be entered into a raffle to win one roundtrip JetBlue Airways ticket.

If you have questions about fundraising or need fundraising ideas, contact Ryan Walls at or 212-402-1123.

Updated Site Info!

Hey team!

Just got word from our Site Captain, Sam.

First of all, there is a SLIGHT CHANCE we might be provided with a shuttle bus to the location. If they have enough interest they MIGHT be able to get a couple of yellow school buses, which will be parked at the NYCares office on 29th St. between 7th and 8th Aves in Manhattan. They'll leave at 8:30am and go directly to the park and then return to the office at the end of the project, probably around 3pm. Although there is a big parking lot for any volunteers wanting to drive, and they can park right next to where we'll be working. It's very convenient.

  • It's a big park and will require a few hundred volunteers actually so we'll have a big group.
  • There is an access road into the park that currently looks like it's been abandoned, with mounds of soil 6ft high or higher along the road interspersed with cobblestones and garbage and fallen trees, and behind these mounds attract wily teenagers and sometimes a few homeless people.
  • Our job will be to try to level out these mounds from the road to the fence behind them, clean up the garbage and recycle the cobblestones.
Info. about the day:
  • The day will begin with registration in the picnic area from 9-9:30am, then we'll gather for a brief introduction and get started right away on the project.
  • We'll break for lunch around 12:30-1:30pm and then finish up, clean up and wrap up by 3pm at the very latest.
  • Sam does not believe any coffee or breakfast items will be available at the start of the day so volunteers can take care of that before they arrive.
  • For lunch, everyone is encouraged to bring their own lunch as the park is big making it not very practical to leave to get anything.
  • We can order pizza however, of which Sam can collect $5 dollars at registration time from anyone who wants in on pizza + soda. There will be a lot of us and we'll want to place the order in the morning so please encourage everyone to have their money ready when they arrive.
  • There is a great picnic area right near where we'll be working where we can all stop and take a nice break.
And it's still not too late to join! Tell your friends!

Volunteer with Us!

Join my team and get ready to give New York City a spring greening on Saturday, April 24. On Hands On New York Day, we’ll be gardening, cleaning, painting, and revitalizing parks, gardens, and other public spaces, making them cleaner, safer, and ready for summer.

The work our team will do on Hands On New York Day benefits everyone in the community. And our work doesn’t have to stop then -- New York Cares creates volunteer programs for 1,000 nonprofit agencies and schools every day of the year that build better lives for 400,000 struggling New Yorkers.

Join my team by clicking on the link: JOIN TEAM SNACKBOT

Can't Volunteer? PLEASE DONATE!

Like a walk-a-thon, we are asking friends, family, and coworkers to support us by making a donation to New York Cares in honor of my service. Your donation will create 11,000 projects this year, through which New York Cares volunteers will help unemployed adults re-enter the workforce, prepare meals for the homeless, visit lonely nursing home residents, and more.

Every dollar donated to New York Cares amounts to $6 in service to the community. I hope you will sponsor us as we volunteer with this amazing organization. Learn more about New York Cares.

Please donate HERE.

Thank you for your support.

Our Site Assignment! FOREST PARK!

We'll be at:

The Forest Park Trust, Inc.
Oak Ridge, One Forest Park
Woodhaven, NY 11421

Gardening and Planting - Volunteers will concentrate on keeping Forest Park open and welcoming to residents of all of the neighborhoods surrounding
the Park by leveling piles of topsoil, removing cobble stone and pulling invasive species.

Forest Park is the third largest park in Queens. It is surrounded by five ethnically diverse neighborhoods, Richmond Hill, Kew Gardens, Forest Hills, Woodhaven, and Glendale.
The History of Forest Park dates back to 1895 when officials of Brooklyn's western district began to search for a place to develop a recreational facility for their constituents who were living in greatly overcrowded conditions. Heavily forested and filled with song birds, rabbits, and quail, the park offered magnificent views of the Long Island Sound and Atlantic Ocean from its high hills. The original aim was to purchase 500 acres of land that would connect to a series of "greenbelts" and extend from the Atlantic Ocean to the Long Island Sound. The site selected for the new park was a large wooded area, located in Queens County. On August 9, 1895, the first parcel of land in what would later become Forest Park was purchased. Because of the numerous landowners involved, the park had to be procured in 124 parcels. When the last of the 538 acres of land was obtained in 1898, Brooklyn and Queens were part of New York City. Thus, the original name of the planned park, Brooklyn Forest Park, was shortened to its present title. Conceived by Frederick Law Olmsted, the wandering design of the park's main drive offers the pastoral quality evident in other New York City flagship parks planned by the renowned architect.
(Read More...)