The entire Shady Park in Long Island City is finally open.
Ten months ago Hurricane Sandy ripped eight large trees that gave Andrews Grove its nickname, damaged play equipment and ruined the fence surrounding the park.
The smaller play structure on the west side of the park on 49th Avenue between Vernon Boulevard and Fifth Street reopened in December.
Two weeks ago the large playground opened.
“We came by after the storm and saw it all wrecked,” said Sam Koch, 7. “It made me kind of sad.”
“Of course we really missed it,” said a mother at the park during the opening ceremony last Friday.
The repair of the blacktop and play equipment and installation of a new fence and benches were paid for with $90,000 in city funding.
But there’s still more to be done.
In November the Parks Department will plant eight new 15- to 18-foot trees to replace the fallen ones.
In April, Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside) announced that his office secured $10,000 from JetBlue and Warner Bros. for trees. FEMA money does not pay for vegetation.
The Friends of Shady Park have been working to pick out appropriate replacements. Lindens used to provide shade there, but don’t hold up particularly well during storms.
“It’s really important that the shade comes back to Shady Park,” Van Bramer said.
State Sen. Mike Gianaris (D-Astoria), Assemblywoman Cathy Nolan (D-Sunnyside), Queens Parks Commissioner Dottie Lewandowski, Friends of Shady Park founders Sheila Lewandowski and Caroline Paul and residents from the community were all at Friday’s opening.