James Street Improvement District

Parks & Recreation

Art Park
Taking its name from the arts hub known as Gallery Row which surrounds it in Downtown Lancaster, this park offers its green space for enjoyment year-round—especially on First Fridays. Located directly across the street from the Pennsylvania College of Art & Design and adjacent to the Lancaster Bureau of Police on the corner of Prince and Chestnut Streets, Arts Park is a great place to catch some rays on a sunny day or to mingle with some of Lancaster's up-and-coming young artists!

Binns Park
Named after the late James H. Binns, a former President and Chairman of Armstrong World Industries, this city park occupies the former west side of Lancaster Square in the heart of the Downtown. Redesigned by a local resident and landscape architect in 2004, much of the park is now lush green space unlike its mostly-concrete predecessor, and its colorful gardens have been planted in such a way as to create an interdependent ecosystem which eliminates the need for chemicals or pesticides for maintenance. Central to the park is an attractive stage used for live entertainment and community events in the spring and summer months, as well as an interactive water feature which is popular among children. Every summer, on Thursday evenings, Binns Park is also home to free family-friendly movies for "Dinner and a Movie," sponsored by the Mayor's Office of Special Events (MOOSE). Binns Park is located on North Queen Street, between Orange and Chestnut Streets.

Buchanan Park
This 22 acre park is home to many different types of recreation. There are 4 tennis courts, 2 basketball courts, play ground equipment, a softball field, swings and a pavilion with picnic tables. In May, the park also hosts a carnival each year. In addition to the field area, there is a community pool that is open during the summer. The park is located directly behind the college on Race and Buchanan Avenues. For more information online: [website]

Lancaster Square
Directly across the street from Binns Park is another public space known as Lancaster Square (not to be confused with Penn Square, which is just one block away to the south). Constructed in 1970 during the Urban Renewal era, this concrete superstructure was formerly home to an urban shopping mall. Awaiting future development, the square's plaza is still home to many community events including Music Fridays, held the third Friday of every month from May through September; Lancaster's ever-popular 4th of July festival, Celebrate Lancaster! ; as well as the city's New Year's Eve festivities, Countdown Lancaster, to name a few.

Linear Park
The 2-3 block Linear Park of Lancaster includes; a walking path, an exercise loop, basketball courts, play ground equipment and swings. The walking path travels from Lemon Street just west of Prince Street to Harrisburg Pike.

Long's Park
At nearly 80 acres, Long's Park is by far the largest of the city's green spaces. Situated northwest of the city at the intersection of Harrisburg Pike and Route 30, the park is home to a free summer-long concert series at its amphitheatre each year as well as a chicken barbeque held by the Sertoma Club each summer which is (according to the Guinness Book of World Records) the world's largest. Since 1900, this park has been a favorite of children and adults alike. Whether it's feeding the geese at the park's spring-fed lake, enjoying its numerous walking paths and playgrounds, or having a picnic at one of its many pavilions, Long's Park is sure to please! [Website]

Market Street Kids Park
Newly restored in April 2005 by the students at the Upper School at Lancaster Country Day School, the Market Street Kids Park is now a comfortable and safe place for children to spend the afternoon. It is home to playground equipment and benches. Though it is a smaller park, it contains enough space and safety for the children of the adjacent neighborhood.

Musser Park
Often referred to as "The Green Heart of Lancaster," H.M. Musser Park opened in 1949. Situated along East Chestnut Street between Lime and Shippen Streets in one of Lancaster's historic districts, the 3.1-acre park is surrounded by beautifully-preserved 19th-century carriage houses and brick row-homes. The park is directly adjacent to the Lancaster Museum of Art, housed in the Greek Revival-style Grubb Mansion. Musser Park's amenities include a newly-reconstructed playground with a rubber play surface, a large open green area with picnic tables, paved walkways, attractive light fixtures, and mature landscaping. Every year, city residents look forward to the park's patriotic "Old-Fashioned Fourth of July," which has been a Lancaster tradition for generations. [Website]

Rotary Park
The Lancaster Rotary Club with support from Lancaster Historical Society, the City, the James Street Improvement District and the Lancaster Alliance has unveiled the new Rotary Park and sculpture on October 5, 2005. The park is located at the intersection of Prince and James. The sculpture depicts children grabbing the end of a bat to settle a dispute or decide the first at bat. It is titled, "Let the Kids Play" and also allows for another person to join in.

Shreiner's Cemetery
Shreiner's Cemetery was founded in 1836 and during that time, it was open to anyone regardless of race. It is located at Chestnut and Mulberry Streets. The cemetery has also been named Concord Cemetery. Some significant historical figures are buried there, including Abolitionist leader Thaddeus Stevens.

Steinman Park
A stone's throw away from bustling Penn Square in the heart of the central business district, Steinman Park is truly an urban oasis of serenity. Encompassed by the warm tones of the surrounding buildings' red brick walls and covered by a canopy of tall trees, the park's centerpiece is its majestic 20-foot waterfall. Located in the first block of West King Street, Steinman Park is an ideal place to meet friends, relax and enjoy a brown-bag lunch or something fresh from nearby Central Market (across the street). The park also shines during the winter months and is known for its lights and décor during the holiday season.

For more information regarding the parks, please contact the Parks Department at, 717-291-4842 or online: [website]

Lancaster Family YMCA
Located at 265 Harrisburg Avenue the Lancaster Family YMCA has become a center for families in the community. Due to its after-school programs it has provided a safe place for children to play and socialize with their friends. For more information about the YMCA please contact them directly at, 717-397-7474 or online: [website]

Boys and Girls Club
It offers a wide range of programs in areas such as the Arts, Sports, Fitness & Recreation, Heath & Life Skills, Education & Career Development and Character & Leadership Development. These programs help the children of the community to plan their futures. The Jack Walter Clubhouse, located at 233 W. Lemon Street, the Boys and Girls Club is an easy commute or walk from the District's schools. For more information about The Boys and Girls Club please contact them directly at, 717-392-6342 or online: [website]

The Lancaster Recreation Commission
The Lancaster Recreation Commission was founded in 1909. It is a nonprofit organization that provides recreational activities for the community all year round. The community programs offered by the Commission are for all ages and they vary from sports activities to cultural events. For more information regarding recreation in the district please contact Lancaster Recreation Commission at, 717-392-2115 or online: [website]

Upcoming Events

God of Carnage
Wednesday, February 1-
Sunday, February 19

Two well-to-do couples meet to discuss their sons' playground altercation in Yazmina R... [more info]
An Architect's Influence
Friday, February 3-
Sunday, February 26

This year’s annual Invitational exhibition features twenty-nine local artist... [more info]
First Friday Arts Celebration
Friday, February 3
Join us in celebrating the arts and the wonderfully diverse arts commun... [more info]



City of Lancaster PA