Have you ever wondered what the large castle-like structure is that can be seen on your journey across the Verrazano Bridge? Most Staten Islanders already know this, but we’ll l clue you in on the hidden gem that is Fort Wadsworth. The fort is one of the oldest military sites in the nation and has stood since the Washington administration. While the fort hasn’t been active since 1995, it currently serves as part of the Gateway National Park Recreation Area. Special events and activities can be enjoyed at the park no matter what time of year it is. Here are some of the great features Fort Wadsworth has to offer.
The Goats of Fort Wadsworth. Yep, you read that correctly. There are goats at Fort Wadsworth. Since 2007 the goats have served as a sustainable resource for park maintenance. The adorable little guys graze on weeds and invasive plant life throughout the park providing a natural landscaping service. They do an even better job than pollution filled lawn mowers! The Goats are able to climb steep hills and access hard to reach areas that a human would find quite challenging to maintain. Many families enjoy taking their children on scheduled goat feeding hikes which offer safe vegetation to feed the animals and a lesson on the history of the Fort.
The Fort Wadsworth Visitors Center features exhibits about the structure and its history. The newly renovated “Mount Sec house” offers a glimpse into the life of an officer at the fort during the 19th century. You can also explore the tunnels in the fort’s batteries or climb up to the overlook for its stunning views. Afternoon hikes and evening Lantern tours are offered this fall.
Camping can be a lot of fun, but not if you fear the great outdoors. Luckily, for just $20 a day, Fort Wadsworth offers an urban camping experience. Close enough to home to make you feel more secure, the grounds include picnic tables, a grill, and fire ring. For your convenience, restrooms and cold showers are also located at the facility. Shore and surf fishing can be enjoyed near the camp site, and with stunning views of the narrows & Verrazano Bridge, it’s the perfect location for any shutterbug.
For more information on the events in this article please visit the links provided below.