NYC Parks MulchFest 2024

Bring your Christmas tree to Riverside Park to be recycled into mulch that will nourish plantings in the Park all year long!
These wood chips are used to nuture trees and plants on streets and gardens parkwide. here’s the best part – you can take a bag of Christmas tree mulch home with you!


1. Volunteer (on January 6)
Volunteers are needed to “de-Christmas” the trees left for recycling. We will be removing ornaments, lights, and getting the trees ready to chip. Then, we’ll spread Christmas tree mulch around street trees along Riverside Drive. Please register on Eventbrite to volunteer and review our health and safety protocol below.


2. Treecycle (from December 26 – January 31)
Recycle your Christmas tree in Riverside Park. Drop your tree at any park entrance and we will bring it to our chipping site to be Treecycled. The chips from your tree will be used as mulch throughout the park. You can even take home a bag of mulch to provide warm winter protection for the street tree in front of your apartment. No need to register – just come on by!
More than 25,000 trees were recycled last year city-wide. Help us top this number!

**Note: Please remember to remove all lights and ornaments before bringing the tree to a MulchFest site. For more info on citywide tree drop-off and chipping sites, please visit

Health & Safety Procedures
The health and safety of our staff and volunteers is of our utmost concern. With COVID-19, RSV, and Flu season at the top of everyone’s mind, we have put in a number of additional practices that we require our volunteers to follow. Below, please read carefully through all our health & safety procedures.

Each individual volunteer must:

· Bring your own water in your reusable water bottle

· Wear closed-toe shoes and comfortable clothing that can get dirty.

· Keep all personal items with you at all times, as we will not have an area for bags.

· Masks and social distancing are recommended, but not required.

On the day of the project, if you are sick or not feeling well, STAY HOME! It is not worth the risk to you or to others. If any volunteer refuses to follow our health & safety procedures, they will be dismissed from the project. We take everyone’s safety very seriously, and greatly appreciate your compliance as we work to move our park forward.

The Hippo Playground Project is an all-volunteer Park User Group affiliated of Riverside Park Conservancy that works in conjunction with the Parks Department to maintain the playground and provide free activities for the community.

An Upper West Side institution, the Hippo Playground Spring Fair Celebrates the season with pony rides, bouncy castles, a petting zoo, games prizes, crafts, food, face painting, entertainment, and more! Proceeds from the Hippo Spring Fair fund the Hippo Summer Concerts Series, the Hippo Halloween Parade & Concert, and improvements in playground throughout Riverside Park.

Rain Date Sunday, May 19

Pre-registration for the event is coming soon! Volunteer for the event here.

With trees come leaves – and when they fall in the park, it’s necessary to clean them up. Join Riverside Park Conservancy to rake leaves off of our pathways, high-traffic areas, and lawns to prevent them from clogging storm drains, making pathways slippery, and smothering the grass. All leaves will be added to our compost pile and turned into valuable mulch for use throughout the park.

Project locations are listed below. Registration (required) opens October 28.

Families and volunteers of all ages are welcome!