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Camping in the Big City

The first in a series throughout the summer highlighting how you can use your MetroCard to enjoy all that New York has to offer brings us to Floyd Bennett Field.

Pack your camping gear, swipe your MetroCard, and take the 2/5 to Flatbush Ave-Brooklyn College. From there, transfer to the Q35 bus. After a short ride, you'll be at Floyd Bennett Field, where starting July 4th, you'll be able to pitch your tent for some old-fashioned camping.

Floyd Bennett Field opened in 1931 as the city's first airport, but now it's part of the National Park Service's "Gateway National Recreation Area." As part of President Obama's America's Great Outdoors initiative, the National Park Service is developing Floyd Bennett Field as the largest urban park campground in America. Over a two-year period, the campground will expand from 5 to 90 sites, and eventually may contain as many as 600 campsites.

On July 4th, the decommissioned airfield will open 47 campsites. You'll have to make reservations at $20 per night for a maximum of seven days. Six people are allowed on each site so larger groups will need to reserve multiple sites. Each site can accommodate one large tent or two small tents.

Remember to bring your own tent and sleeping bags. Each site has a picnic table, a grill and a fire ring. Portable restrooms are nearby but showers are not available at the park yet.

And get this...if you have never camped out before, you can take lessons at the park. Campers can also fish, hike, bike, or just take in everything Mother Nature has to offer. Campers can also visit Hanger B. Hangar B is the home to Floyd Bennett Field's Historic Aircraft Restoration Project (HARP). Visitors can enjoy seeing dedicated Volunteers-In-Parks working on the park's collection of historic aircraft. Hangar B is open to the public Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, 9 AM to 4:30 PM.

Floyd Bennett Field is open daily. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/gate/index.htm
or call 718-338-3799. Camping reservations can be made online at www.recreation.gov. Call 718-338-4306 for camping lesson reservations.