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Grill baby grill! Prospect Park opening new east-side grilling area

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They have a license to grill!

Prospect Park is cooking up a new legal barbecuing area after neighbors on the Prospect-Lefferts Gardens side of the park clamored for more places to get their grill on.

The new location, a patch of grass near the corner of Lincoln Road and East Drive, will provide an accessible, aboveboard cookout spot for the neighborhoods bordering a side of the park that has long lacked the plentiful sanctioned grilling zones near Park Slope, Windsor Terrace, and Ditmas Park, a park representative said.

“Previously there were not as many barbecue areas on the east end of the park,” said Prospect Park Alliance spokeswoman Grace McCreight. “Since we are Brooklyn’s Backyard, we’re really looking to accommodate everyone.”

The new hot spot, which opens Memorial Day weekend, will bring the number of designated grilling areas in the park to 13. The new area does not currently have any fixed grills, so would-be pit masters will need to supply their own cooking apparatuses. Bring-your-own-barbecues must be charcoal — not propane — and must be at least two feet off the ground. And parties of 20 or more will need to secure a permit before lighting up.

Barbecuing in the park has been a burning issue in past warm-weather seasons. Neighbors have long complained about meat-heads grilling illegally — setting up their smokers in unsanctioned locations or using unauthorized equipment — as well as the effects of charcoal smoke and increased trash. One local launched an online petition last summer to ban grilling in the park outright, garnering 186 signatures.

But McCreight says she doesn’t expect neighbors to get broiled up about the new grill zone. Park honchos selected the new location precisely because it is relatively far from residential areas, mitigating the risk of wafting smoke, she said, and besides — they were the ones who asked for the new area in the first place.

“The interest in more grilling areas came from the community, and I haven’t heard any complaints about the area,” she said.

And the park will hire additional staff during barbecue season to help address the trash problem, McCreight added.

Reach reporter Noah Hurowitz at nhurowitz@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–4505. Follow him on Twitter @noahhurowitz
Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

David Ainley from Bed Stuy says:
Any ideas if they're planning on adding more fixed grills? :) Please, Prospect Park?
April 16, 2015, 12:55 pm
ty from pps says:
grill of my dreams.
April 16, 2015, 1:10 pm
ThankGoodness from Brooklyn says:
I'm so glad those whiny transplants didn't get their way by trying to ban BBQing in the park because they get offended by the smell of cooked meat.
April 16, 2015, 1:28 pm
Rob from Prospect Park says:
Agree with ThankGoodness! 186 signatures vs. hundreds of citizens grilling every weekend. Keep Prospect Park for the people.
April 16, 2015, 2:45 pm
Mike says:
Prospect Park is big enough for grilling. Few of our parks are though. Any park that does allow grilling also needs to reverse their smoking ban. It's pretty much the same thing except that grilling is more noxious and has more carcinogens in the smoke.
April 16, 2015, 4:04 pm
Bob from Ft Greene says:
I hope they know what they're doing. It's really hard to get a good char on kale.
April 16, 2015, 4:09 pm
ty from pps says:
it's even harder to grill spaghetti - it slips thru the grill.
April 16, 2015, 4:35 pm
bkmnahatman from nubrucklyn says:
BBQ pork and beef all day with roasted veggies and fruit
April 17, 2015, 12:55 pm
Jimmy from Flatbush says:
Some weekends can pretty pretty damn brutal when it comes to the smoke from grilling. Other than being at one of those BBQ/picnics, it can make a lot of other recreation in the park quite unpleasant.

It's not the smell of smoke or the smell of food, it's constantly inhaling thick smoke.
April 17, 2015, 1:04 pm
Gloria Martinez from Hispanic says:
Muchos good for us LATINOS!!!
April 17, 2015, 7:41 pm
Walker from Kensington says:
I don't know about square footage of allowed BBQ space but "traditionally" there has always been plenty of grilling on the east side. Le Frak center displaced that and now they are not planning to allow it back so we need more space elsewhere I guess. This new space for all the hype is a tiny sliver if lawn shared by the bridle path. Dust and horse manure always the best BBQ experience. Chosen to be away from residential areas? What gibberish is that? It's right inside the park from the densest residential area. Better stick to its what the people asked for.
In the end what does it matter as it is well known that all BBQ rules are ignored on busy days. It's a free for all. Last time I heard it reported more than half the trees near BBQ areas were damaged by smoke and coals. How long before the one tree near this new space gets scorched? In 3...2....1...
April 17, 2015, 10:12 pm
Jim from Cobble Hill says:
This isn't a practical solution at this point, but perhaps in the long-term an option like solar grilling might be available. It works great, no smoke, no re-filling charcoal for periods of extended cooking, and no ashes to have to clean up. Like I said, this isn't something that could be done quickly (unless you bring your own), but it should at least be considered. And before you say that solar grills don't work in the rain, please tell me who's out there grilling in the rain... Dusk and after dark is another story, but hey, I'm not saying let's get rid of the charcoal ones all together.
April 18, 2015, 7:58 am
Mike says:
solar grilling. Ha. That's a good one.
April 20, 2015, 1:24 pm

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