Some recent links of interest:
The Brooklyn Based site offers a perceptive-sounding review of the skating experience at the new Lakeside rink, with some good practical tips on gaming the inevitable weekend crowds. Writer Kate Hooker found the ice "spectacular," although she had less kind words for their rental skates and locker set-up.
"The Remains of the Night: Sex, Trash, and Nature in the City" is a thoughtful account by Elizabeth Royte of her participation in the brief, glorious Prospect Park "Litter Mob." I never got around to pitching in with the Mob, an ad-hoc project helmed by activist and blogger Marie Viljoen. whose self-appointed task was to pick up the nastiest leavings of the cruising crowd in Prospect Park's secluded Midwood (and, it was hoped, shame the Parks Department into stepping up their own efforts).
Speaking of the redoubtable Ms. Viljoen, she has written a gorgeous and engaging book, 66 Square Feet: A Delicious Life, One Woman, One Terrace, 92 Recipes, that includes some of her foraging adventures in Prospect Park. She also continues to blog at 66 Square Feet, from her new perch in Harlem.
Finally, the New York Times did a nice sampling of obscure monuments in parks around the city; they featured one on Grand Army Plaza that I haven't investigated yet, of Scpttish-born gynecologist Alexander J.C. Skene. "Dedicated in 1905, his monument, in Grand Army Plaza at the entrance to Prospect Park, is an august affair, with a large bronze bust set against a tall slab of white Vermont marble," reports the Times.
The article also mentions the Concert Grove's monument to Irish poet Thomas Moore, with some delicious details I'd never read elsewhere: He loathed Americans, and was mistaken by President Thomas Jefferson for a child on account of being vertically challenged (something you'd never guess from his towering bust). My own expedition to Moore's statue on St. Patrick's Day back in 2008 yielded Asian-American brides and phony hippies, as recounted here.