Central Park Booting Buskers From ‘Quiet Zones’


If your last walk through Central Park felt eerily quiet, you can thank the NYPD. Over the past few weeks, they have started enforcing eight quiet zones within Central Park, where music and loud noises are prohibited. The zones include the Bethesda Fountain, Shakespeare Garden, Sheep Meadow, and Strawberry Fields.

Before it was a “quiet zone,” Bethesda Fountain was a popular spot for street musicians to perform because of its incredible acoustics. Similarly, many musicians play at Strawberry Fields, the John Lennon memorial, because of its associations with the dead Beatle. This incredible video was filmed at Strawberry Fields, and if the Parks Department has its way, it could be the last:

Vickie Karp, a park spokeswoman defended the “quiet zones” arguing, “It is not that we are against music. It is that we are for quiet… Parks are one of the few places you can come and hear the soothing sounds of nature: bird songs, falling water, the wind in the leaves, human conversation.”

Her defense of the “quiet zones” doesn’t hold water, because most of the musicians who perform in Central Park play classical pieces, and their music simply adds to the tranquil vibe. If the above performance of “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” disturbed anyone’s Central Park experience, we’ll eat our shoes.