by Mr. Wonka
Brooklyn, New York
February 4, 2003
This park was designed by the architect Stamatios P. Lykos, who was commissioned to create a sunken court amphitheater capable of housing community events. His design was based on an ancient Greek city-planning scheme, which is evident in the gradually descending stairs that form the heart of the courtyard (a favorite sector of local skateboarders). The city approved a $1 million grant in 1990 to refurbish the park, with the restorations focusing on adding new benches, tables, a playground, and updated landscaping.
Today, all of the above additions have given the park a strong community vibe. During the hot summer months, local women crowd the benches that line 30th Avenue on the outskirts of the park, eagerly sharing their latest gossip. Old men can be seen in a heated chess battle, or just playing cards. Kids fill the playground, teens impress their crew with their latest skate tricks, and people of all ages shoot hoops on one of the two basketball courts located on the south end of this compact area.
Music festivals are held on an almost daily basis during the fall and summer, each one focused on a different nationality (Mexican, Italian, Greek, Indian, etc.). Sometimes food native to that country will be offered too, as well as clothing and arts booths selling various wares.
I really enjoy having this piece of local history right down the block from where I live, and watching the jubilant participants of the summer music festivals. Make sure to at least stop by when you're in the neighborhood to get a look at the great sculptures found at Athens Square Park.
From journal Let me tell you A-stor-ia 'bout my neighborhood