Picnics at the Preserve are a unique experience. All picnic locations have views of the historic mansions, the Long Island Sound, and the natural beauty of the Preserve’s grounds. Picnic tables on the Preserve’s grounds are available to visitors on a first-come / first-served basis – but you can plan a special picnic event by reserving an area in advance – here’s how:
- Select the picnic area – choose from six available locations on the Preserve – scroll down for detailed descriptions. Call 516.571.7901 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
- Complete the Facility Use Form, available at the Gatehouse.
- Pay the reservation fee: $50 on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays; $25 on Monday – Friday. Pay by cash, check (payable to the Sands Point Preserve Conservancy, Inc.) or credit card (in person or by phone). Parking fees apply: $15 per car / free parking with membership pass.
- Phil Dejana Learning Center: two tables seat 12 -16 people in the shade of a great copper beach tree, with views of Castle Gould, the Great Lawn, and the Long Island Sound at a distance. The Phil Dejana Learning Center Outdoor Classroom is nearby for children ages 3 – 7.
- The Great Lawn Boulders: four tables seat 18 – 24 people under a canopy of shade trees in the center of the Great Lawn.
- The Great Lawn Near Hempstead House: three tables seat 18 – 24 people under a shade tree beside the parking lot at Hempstead House.
- The Highlands: two tables seat 12 – 16 people located in a shady area on the right side of the drive around the Great Lawn, past the bee apiary.
- Corner Views: two tables seat 12 – 16 people near the corner of the wooden fencing overlooking the beachfront, on the grassy area east of Hempstead House, with afternoon shade.
- Checker Board: one table seats 6 – 8 people to the left of Hempstead House when facing the front of the mansion, among small game tables and the enormous checker board.
Bathrooms are located in the Visitor Center in Castle Gould and at the Gatehouse.
- Picnic tables cannot be moved.
- Cooking is not permitted – no sternos or barbecuing; prepared food may be brought in and/or delivered.
- No alcoholic beverages.
- Site must be thoroughly cleaned after your picnic; trash receptacles and recycling bins are provided, including a dumpster behind Castle Gould.
- Bring additional tables, chairs, small pop-up tents, tablecloths.
- Bring water. There is no access to water in the picnic areas.
- There are no lifeguards on the beach, so we do not encourage swimming.
- Do not climb on the bluffs.
- Vending machines are located in the Visitor Center in Castle Gould.