Parks, Playgrounds & Open Space Lands
Located within the Borough of Tenafly are a total of some 424 acres of various municipal parks, open space lands and the municipal center.
Dominating the municipal lands are lands on the East Hill consisting of the "Lost Brook Preserve," a 1975 Green Acres acquisition, the Tenafly Nature Center which adjoins the Preserve, and 34 acres in a 200-foot deep strip of land which extends the full length of the westerly side of 9W. Most of this strip of land was a gift from John S. Rockefeller.
The various municipal parks and open spaces contain a variety of recreational facilities and other amenities for local enjoyment:
Davis Johnson Park & Gardens. Located at the corner of Engle Street and Westervelt Avenue, this 7+-acre site contains beautiful gardens and paths including a redesigned rose garden that has become a significant attraction for visitors to the park. The Borough acquired the original tract of 5.26 acres in the 1960's from the Estate of Alliene S. D. Johnson. In 1993, the Borough acquired an additional 1.97 acres to protect the park from the impact of proposed development on the adjacent property. Today, the park contains a greenhouse, maintenance facility and meeting room, gazebo, brick patio, walking paths and landscaping and flowerbeds. The park and gardens are the site for photographs for many wedding parties and wedding ceremonies throughout the year. Individuals may reserve the park for this purpose by applying to the Department of Public Works for a permit.
Roosevelt Common. This 10-acre site is located on Riveredge Road and contains the historic Theodore Roosevelt Monument and pond. There are nine (9) tennis courts (three are lighted) within the Common available for use by residents with a tennis badge obtained from the Recreation Office. The Common includes walking paths and two children's play areas and is a popular leisure time location for Tenafly residents. Recently a skate park was constructed adjacent to the pond. It is the site of the annual Independence Day celebration.
Sunnyside Park. The Borough recently renovated this 5.5-acre park and recreation area. It is located on Oak Avenue and the park includes a walking path around its perimeter, two children's play areas for older and younger children, and rest room and storage facility. The park includes three playing fields used for softball and baseball and the site accommodates two soccer fields for use in the Fall.
Huyler Park is located in the center of Tenafly' downtown next to the historic railroad station. This passive park is the site of a summer concert series hosted by the Tenafly Business Development Committee and it is the site for the annual Memorial Day ceremonies. Also, the park contains memorials to Tenafly veterans.
Neighborhood parks & playgrounds. The Borough maintains a number of small neighborhood parks and playground areas. Froggy Park is located at the corner of West Clinton Avenue and Foster Road. It is a popular play area for children ages 2 - 5. Walnut Park is located between Walnut Drive and Leonard Avenue. The park contains a children's playground area and open space. Griffin Park is located within the Roosevelt Common on Riveredge Road. This shady play area contains playground equipment for children ages 2 - 5.
Municipal Center Athletic Fields & Basketball Courts. Located behind the Municipal Center is a newly constructed artificial turf field that is used for soccer and softball. This multipurpose field is also used for soccer in the Fall. Municipal basketball courts are located at the southwest corner of Riveredge Road and Tenafly Road. The courts are lighted from dusk to 10:00 p.m. with the exception of December, January and February when the lights are turned off.
Tenafly Nature Center is a 52-acre haven adjoining the Borough's 330-acre Lost Brook Preserve. It is operated by the Tenafly Nature Center Association, which is a member-supported, non-profit organization dedicated to preservation and education. The Nature Center supports abundant wildlife, including over 50 species of nesting birds, 23 mammals, and 24 types of amphibians and reptiles. The John A. Redfield Building houses natural history exhibits and live animal displays. Professional naturalists offer a wide range of programs to school children, scouts and families with over 500 groups and 12,000 program participants annually. Visit the Nature Center Web site at www.tenaflynaturecenter.org/.
Lost Brook Preserve. One of the Borough's far-reaching planning decisions was the acquisition in 1975 of a 194-acre woodland tract for passive use. The four-year quest for this Preserve bordering of East Clinton Avenue and Route 9W began in 1972. Acquisition was made possible by the largest Green Acres grant ever awarded at the time by the State of New Jersey and by other public and private funds, including substantial pledges by residents. Nature trails wind through the densely wooded tract, which is open to the public year round.
Churchill Nature Preserve. The Borough acquired this 8-acre site in 1960 to provide a nature preserve for present and future generations of Tenafly residents to observe the natural flora and fauna of the area in its original state. Recently a group of Eagle Scouts refurbished the paths and constructed new bridtges. It is located on Churchill Road.
Greenbrook Sanctuary. This rugged woodland preserve at the top of the Palisades cliffs is administered by the Palisades Nature Association. Of the total 165 acres, 120 acres lie within Tenafly's borders. The preserve offers magnificent river views, waterfalls, many species of plants and animals, and 235 listed species of birds. Since it is a sanctuary rather than a park, Greenbrook restricts walking to marked paths. There is an annual membership fee.