Learn About the Best Places to Get Online Access in Central Park, New York City
Central Park is not only the first public park built in the U.S., but it is also arguably the most famous. Every year, 25 million people visit the park for vacation, recreation or even as a brief respite from business. With our incredibly connected world today, it’s inevitable that park-goers will want to get online during their visit.
Throughout New York City, the Parks and Recreation department is setting up AT&T Wi-Fi hot spots to enable greater connectivity. The five-year initiative will provide access at 26 locations throughout all five boroughs. Four of these locations are within Central Park.
In addition, there are other groups throughout the city that are working to provide free online access such as NYCwireless. Some of these locations will be close to the park, but not inside it, so coverage may not be as reliable.
How to Get Online During Your Visit
For the best chances of getting online, visit one of the AT&T hot spots. They are located at:
· Mineral Springs Pavilion: Located between 69th St. and 70th St. on the west side of the park right next to Sheep Meadow, Mineral Springs Pavilion offers park-goers a place to relax and grab a bite to eat. The eatery is operated by Le Pain Quotidien, a Belgian restaurant, and it serves bread, soup, sandwiches and other light fare. The terrace sits up to 100 people, making it the perfect place to sit and snack while checking your email or catching up on some quick business.
· Rumsey Playfield: Host of the Central Park SummerStage concerts, Rumsey Playfield hosts thousands of music-goers every year. The free Wi-Fi in this area is available June through September, in conjunction with the SummerStage series. Rumsey Playfield is on the east side of the park, and is accessible via E. 69th St.
· Central Park Zoo: New York’s famed Central Park Zoo is home to a wide range of wild animals, and now, you can hop online and play social games on your iPad or do more complex work such as attend an online learning course on web development or learn how to install WordPress on BlueHost in between animal watching. The Zoo is on the southeast side of the park near E. 64th St.
· Tavern on the Green: Tavern on the Green is not only a dining hot spot, but now it’s a Wi-Fi hot spot as well. The restaurant is currently undergoing a renovation, but is slated to reopen in December of 2013. It is located on the west side between W. 66th St. and W. 67th St.
To log on at any of these locations, look for the network name “attwifi” on your computer and click on it. You do not need a username or password, and best of all, you don’t need to pay anything.
Other Ways to Log On in the Park
There are other groups working to provide free wireless throughout the city. Most of these groups are devoted to providing wireless in one area of the city, such as Union Square or Bryant Park. However, NYCwireless is one group looking at the city as a whole. You can check out their website (www.nycwireless.net) to view a list of hot spots in the area, some of which are in the vicinity of Central Park. For example, the Apple store on Fifth Ave. next to the park is one place where you can get free Wi-Fi.
In addition, you can check out the Open WiFi NYC site (www.openwifinyc.com), which lists free hot spots throughout New York City.
Follow the People for the Best Access
Overall, if you’re looking to get online during your visit to Central Park, it makes the most sense to stick to the most densely populated areas in the park, which are generally on the southern half. You can also look for restaurants and cafes along the border of the park which are likely to provide free access.
-By Kathryn Sucich
Kathryn Sucich is a freelance writer and fan of the latest technology for both business and personal use. While she may not be able to tell you how to use the WordPress email plugin, she can tell you about her favorite iPhone apps or e-books that she’s read.