Idlewild Park Preserve--The Jewel of Southeast Queens

A.  Since 2003, one of the main projects of the Alliance has been the preservation and restoration of the wetlands in Idlewild Park Preserve, an approximately 225 acre natural Forever Wild site located just north of JFK Airport that is not only the Head of the Bay, but is a major source of fresh water to Jamaica Bay. It is home to many rare species like the snowy egret, ospreys, diamond-back terrapins,  fiddler crabs, etc..

B.  In tandem with wetland preservation and restoration in Idlewild, is the establishment of the Idlewild Park Salt Marsh Environmental Science Learning Center through which environmental education will be provided to children and families of the community at large. The construction of the center is finally happening. The opening is scheduled for January 2021. The Alliance can’t wait for the opening because it will allow us to offer a full-blown menu of exciting hands-on workshops, field trips, recreational activities and other interesting offerings  that one finds in a nature center. In the meantime, the Alliance runs the precursor of a full-scale environmental science learning center out of the park house in Springfield Park and its office trailer in the parking lot of the Idlewild Cricket field. (Go to for further information about our current environmental education programs.)

C.  To accomplish its goals*, the Eastern Queens Alliance seeks volunteers who share our vision. High up on the Alliance's agenda is to generate a sustained spirit of community volunteerism and support. EQA recognizes that community education and community involvement are vital. It invites you to help us preserve and restore this jewel nature has given us by becoming a part of the Idlewild Park solution!

D.  To work towards the accomplishment of its objectives, the Alliance is actively seeking funding. Over the years, it been awarded small grants from NYS DEC, the Kaplan Fund, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, the NYC Environmental Fund, legislative grants, Con Edison and HEP as well as discretionary funding from our Council members. 

E. Through a contract with EDAW Inc., an international landscape architectural firm, an award-winning master concept plan and schematic design was completed. The implementation of this vision for a restored Idlewild replete with trails, walkways, boardwalks, blinds and open classroom areas  increases not only the opportunities for environmental education and recreation, but for collaboration with research teams in wetland restoration and management, too.  Currently, a subsets of that master plan, calling for aquatic restoration, trails, and an open classroom, are under design development.

*See the IdlewildStrategicPlan.pdf for additional information