Depending on your perspective, donning a bathing suit to splash around in the streets of Manhattan either sounds like a dream or a public health hazard. The tenth annual Citi Summer Streets festival returns this August, and this year, it’s installing a giant water park shaped like a dishwasher.
For its annual event, the Department of Transportation will close off seven miles of streets between Central Park and the Brooklyn Bridge and turn them into a street fair packed with activities. Park Ave., Lafayette Ave. and Centre St. will become car-free zones for New Yorkers to bike, walk, and yes, splash around on three Saturdays in August.
You’ll find the 30 by 50 foot inflatable water park at the Central Park Rest Stop, at 71st St. and Park Ave. Designed by Summer Streets sponsor LG Electronics, it's made to look like its new line of dishwashers and comes with obstacle courses, jet streams and slides in the shape of cutlery.
If that’s not your thing, you can find plenty more to do.
At the Uptown Adventure Zone located at Park and 57th St., you can ride a 165 foot high, 30 foot long zipline, or scale a rock wall set up by Brooklyn Boulders.
Down at Astor Place, play mini-golf and summit Mount Everest via virtual reality headsets. The festival’s theme this year is “Storytelling through the Senses,” and if you dare, you can go on a “smellwalk” around the neighborhood led by designer Kate McLean, who’s working on a research project titled Smellmapping Astor Place.
Vita Coco’s three-story waterslide returns to Foley Square, along with a beach bar where you can play cornhole, giant jenga, or just chill in beach chairs while cooling off with coconut water.
Summer Streets is open Saturdays August 5, 12 and 19, from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more info, go here.