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Designed in 1909 by architects UpJohn and Conable and landscape architects Brinley and Holbrook, Rye Town Park and Oakland Beach were created during a period when Westchester was developing it's Long Island Sound beaches for recreational usage. The total 63 acre area serves as a popular spot to come experience some fun and relaxation at the historically known spot overlooking the Long Island Sound.


  • Rye Town Park and Bathing Complex
  • Rye Town Park Map
  • Oakland Beach Overlooking Long Island Sound
  • Rye Town Park (Exact Date Unknown)
  • Ariel View of Park and Beach
  • Seaside Johnny's Restaurant at Rye Town Park
  • Oakland Beach (1910)
  • Rye Town Park

Designed in 1909 by architects Upjohn and Conable and landscape architects Brinley and Holbrook, the 63 acre property is made up of Rye Town Park (28.1 acres) and Oakland Beach (34.5 acres). Both located along the shore of the Long Island Sound in Rye, New York. Adjacent to the park and beach in the east is the well-known Playland Amusement Park, also a National Historic Landmark. 

The park area “sits approximately 15 feet above the beach level, grounded securely by a rubble stone foundation/retaining wall on the eastern side.”1 The defining landscape features of the park include s “stone walls, a terrace overlook, a stone bridge, light fixtures, staircases and ramps, pathways, trees, plantings, lawns, a small lake and Oakland Beach. There are 17 buildings and structures within the park. Of these, six are historically significant and contribute to the architectural integrity of the site.”2 The buildings and structures are for practical support, ranging from a “comfort station, to beach attendant booths to garages.”3

One of the most popular structures within the park is the bathing pavilion by the beach. “The bathing pavilion, completed in 1910, was the most spectacular feature of the park…. It was a playful interpretation of the Spanish Colonial, or Mission, style, intended to make a dramatic visual statement. Its twin stucco towers with their flaring red-tile roofs were visible for many miles on Long Island Sound and became a trademark for the park.”4

There are also four primary pedestrian entrances to the park, with a paved lot on the inland side of the main building for cars. On busy summer weekends, overflow is directed to parking areas on the lawns. These areas are known as Forrest Grove and Chester Grove. 

“The kidney shaped Crystal Lake is sited approximately in the center of the park and at the northernmost shore was a Music Hall pavilion.The building’s placement recalls the ideas Olmsted & Vaux employed for their design of Prospect Park.”5 Unfortunately over the years the lake has been reduced to about one-third its former size and has since been renamed Duck Pond.  

In addition to the famous Bathing Pavilion, “there are three other historic buildings and structures: a restaurant completed in 1910 by Upjohn & Conable; the Spring House; and the 1925 Women’s Bath House.”6 All three of these locations have been updated and renovated over time, especially with the case of the restaurant. “Substantial work was done in 2000 to upgrade the restaurant facility, including a complete interior renovation, new clay tile roof, new outdoor dining terrace that successfully integrates the park level dining and the beach level dining.”7 Other structures around the park have also become more modern over time. Including garages, storage facilities, concession stands, a First Aid station, bathrooms, snack bar, lifeguard station, and admissions booths. These have all been renovated and modernized to ensure the best experience for park/beach patrons. 

“Today the extent of Rye Town Park and Oakland Beach remain much the same as when founded in 1909…. Through time, the park, beach, restaurant and bathing complex have remained loyal to their original purpose.”8 For those who wish to relax and be surrounded by nature on a hot summer day, there is perhaps no better place than Rye Town Park and Oakland Beach. “Rye Town Park is a heavily used and well-loved asset, not just for Rye but for the whole area.”9 The location was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2002.

  1. Shaver, Peter D.. Rye Town Park and Oakland Beach. National Register of Historic Places Registration Form. Published August 19th 2002.
  2. Shaver, Peter D.. Rye Town Park and Oakland Beach. National Register of Historic Places Registration Form. Published August 19th 2002.
  3. Shaver, Peter D.. Rye Town Park and Oakland Beach. National Register of Historic Places Registration Form. Published August 19th 2002.
  4. Williams, Gray. Picturing Our Past: National Register Sites in Westchester County . Elmsford , NY. Westchester County Historical Society , 2003.
  5. Shaver, Peter D.. Rye Town Park and Oakland Beach. National Register of Historic Places Registration Form. Published August 19th 2002.
  6. Shaver, Peter D.. Rye Town Park and Oakland Beach. National Register of Historic Places Registration Form. Published August 19th 2002.
  7. Shaver, Peter D.. Rye Town Park and Oakland Beach. National Register of Historic Places Registration Form. Published August 19th 2002.
  8. Shaver, Peter D.. Rye Town Park and Oakland Beach. National Register of Historic Places Registration Form. Published August 19th 2002.
  9. Williams, Gray. Picturing Our Past: National Register Sites in Westchester County . Elmsford , NY. Westchester County Historical Society , 2003.
Image Sources(Click to expand)

https://patch.com/new-york/rye/twilight-tuesdays-concert-series-rye-town-park-0

https://news.hamlethub.com/ryebrook/neighbors/3579-rye-town-park-commission-appoints-new-park-director

https://www.townofryeny.com/rye-town-park-and-beach

https://www.ryehistory.org/stories/rye-town-park-how-lucky-we-are

https://www.townofryeny.com/requirement/nature-fun

https://www.ebay.com/itm/1910-Taking-a-Sun-Bath-Oakland-Beach-Rye-NY-post-card-Westchester-county-/352937949725

https://seeswim.com/location/rye-town-park/