Destination Playground: J.J. Byrne Playground in Park Slope Is Action-Packed for All Ages

The water features at James J. Byrne Playground in Park Slope are a huge draw.  Photo by Al DiIngeniis
The water features at James J. Byrne Playground in Park Slope are a huge draw. Photo by Al DiIngeniis
5/7/19 - By Katie Nave

It’s no surprise that one of the city’s most family-friendly neighborhoods is home to a top destination playground. J.J. Byrne Playground, a Park Slope hotspot, underwent a year-long, multi-million dollar renovation in 2012 to bring in challenging climbing structures for older kids and an action-packed play area for younger kids, plus engaging water features that include a stream and spray jets.

Read on for more features that solidify this spot as one of our favorite playgrounds.


This renovated park has all the playground staples, but unique features as well. Photo by Sara Frazier

Located in Washington Park on Fifth Avenue between 3rd and 4th Streets, J.J. Byrne Playground features playground staples like swings, tunnels, jungle gyms, bridges, and slides, but also hosts colonial-themed equipment, including a submarine periscope and interactive panels depicting the Battle of Brooklyn.

The 3rd Street side of the playground is best suited for younger kids, thanks to a gated toddler area, cheerful farm animal cutouts, bucket swings, and other mini equipment. Older kids can battle it out with the aim-and-shoot water spray cannons closer to 4th Street.

As the city temperatures rise, my daughter fully appreciates the abundance of this playground's water features. Bring a towel and water shoes in preparation for the water cannons, splash pad, manual water pump and mill stream (be careful, the rocks get slippery!).

RELATED: 50 Best Things to Do in Park Slope With Kids

The Old Stone House is a popular birthday spot! 

A huge selling point is the expansive playground’s proximity to the historic Old Stone House. This site of the 1776 Battle of Brooklyn is now a colonial museum, offering history lessons and community events, like theater and live music.

RELATED: 25 Best Things to Do in Brooklyn's Prospect Park With Kids

Kids can play in the expansive green space while parents watch from the shaded benches. Photo courtesy of NYC Parks

Parents and caregivers will appreciate the plentiful benches under shady trees to sip iced coffees. Our family never tires of grabbing a frozen yogurt from Culture and sprawling out on the Old Stone lawn.

Public bathrooms are accessible via the side doors of the Old Stone House. When everyone has worked up an appetite, visit our favorite kid-friendly Park Slope restaurants.

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