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How to: Camp for Free in NYC

New York City Travel
by Carlo Alcos Jun 24, 2010
Ever wanted to pitch a tent in the middle of Manhattan? Here’s your chance.

I JUST FINISHED registering for a chance to “win” a spot to camp in Central Park. I found out about it from an article at New York’s Urban Park Rangers — whose “mission is to link New Yorkers to the natural world” — are hosting free camp nights all throughout the summer.

As part of their Family Camping program, parks in New York’s five boroughs will play campground on selected nights. There are two remaining nights in Central Park, however registration for July 3 just ended.

But mark July 28 on your calendar; that’s the day you need to register for a chance to camp in Central Park on August 7.

“Winners” (only 30) will be randomly drawn from all the entries. Tents and food will be provided by the Urban Park Rangers, so all you need is your sleeping bag. But Central Park isn’t the only game in town. Campouts will also be held at the Inwood Hill Nature Center in Manhattan on July 31 and September 25.

And, of course, the parks in Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island, and the Bronx. Visit the Registration page for more details. Good luck!


If you’re gonna camp, you might need some tips: 8 Tips for Camping With Your Dog and 7 Items to Pack for Winter Camping.

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