Inwood Hill Park (Kids 12 & Under)

at "Wildman" Steve Brill - Manhattan

Course Details
$20 32 seats left
Start Date:

Sun, May 21, 11:45am - 3:45pm Eastern Time

Next start dates (5)

Anne Loftus Playground
At Dykeman St and Broadway
New York, New York 10040
Ticket Price for Accompanying Adult.
Purchase Options
Class Level: All levels
Age Requirements: 1 - 12 years old
Average Class Size: 35

Flexible Reschedule Policy: This provider has flexible, free rescheduling for any-in person workshop. Please see the cancellation policy for more details

What you'll learn in this other kids camp class:

Inwood Hill Park is one of the best places for foraging in late fall. The city's hilliest park, with a large, mature forest, meadows, thickets, and cultivated areas, it's loaded with wild plants, even in late fall.

This is the time to search for roots. Here are some we'll be finding: Burdock, an invasive, Eurasian, expensive, detoxifying herb sold in health food stores, abounds in human-disturbed areas throughout the park. Scrub the root, slice razor-thin diagonally, and cook in moist heat 15 to 20 minutes or until tender. It's fantastic.The root is great in soups, stews, rice dishes, or for making the Japanese delicacy, kinpira gobo. You can also marinate and bake it, to make the "Wildman's" Vegan Beef Jerky.

Sassafras root, the original source of root beer, is a sure find. You can use it to make beverages such as tea or root beer, or as an exotic-tasting, cinnamon-like seasoning.

The black birch tree, on the other hand, contains oil of wintergreen, and provides the raw material for birch beer. You can freshen your breath by chewing on the twigs, or use them to make tea or birch beer. A strong tea provides non-steroidal anti-inflammatory aspirin-like compounds, good for pain and inflammation (it's used in commercial massage liniments). It’s also fantastic for seasoning puddings.

Violet Brill Enjoying Black Birch

Black birch contains oil of wintergreen or methyl salicylate, a natural forerunner of aspirin, that's also very tasty, making it the best home remedy for teething.

Another root the group will look for is the tuber of the hog peanut, a legume with a flavor akin to raw peanuts.

There are still more roots to seek. Near the park's summit, an overgrown area conceals wild carrots, a tastier version of the familiar garden vegetable, with a light beige taproot. 

Peppery-sweet common evening primrose roots sometimes grow nearby. You can purchase a prostaglandin-rich oil pressed from the seeds in health food stores for PMS and other ailments, but you can't beat the root in soups, stews, and grain or bean dishes.

Pepper sedum is an unusual herb, often used as an ornamental, that grows on bare rock at the edge of a precipice. A tropical plant without the ability to die back in the winter, it's in season all year, and grows where it does because it needs the heat the sun-baked rock provides in the summer to reproduce. The plant tastes somewhat like black pepper, and makes an excellent seasoning in any savory dish.

Everyone will also find plenty of leafy green vegetables and herbs on this tour, since plants that tolerate the cold abound in this park. We'll be finding chickweed, which tastes like corn, parsley-flavored goutweed, resinous epazote, bitter-savory dandelion greens, pungent garlic mustard (which also has a delicious horseradish-flavored taproot), spicy field garlic, with delicious leaves and bulbs, lemony-flavored curly dock, and wild lettuce, only good in the cold weather.

Even though it's too late for most mushrooms, there are some species that don't mind the cold, and they grow here. With lots of rain beforehand, and some luck, we could find oyster mushrooms, tree ears, and enoki mushrooms.

Meeting Location:

In the Anne Loftus Playground in Ft. Tryon Park, 4746 Broadway, corner Dykeman St. and Broadway, Manhattan, NY, not inside Inwood Hill Park itself.

Please Note:

  • Participants should be dressed for the weather, and be aware of very bad subway service. Trains are often canceled due to track work.
  • No sandals (there are mosquitoes, thorns and poison ivy). Everyone should have plastic bags for veggies and herbs, paper bags for mushrooms, which spoil in
  • Plastic, containers for berries from late spring through fall, water and lunch, and extra layers when it's cold. Digging implements and pocket knives are optional.
  • Please bring plastic bags for vegetables and herbs, paper bags for mushrooms, drinking water, and a pen (to sign in).
  • Dogs are permitted. Children are encouraged to attend.
  • There's no smoking whatsoever at any time.

School Notes:
If you can't attend the class you signed up for, please call or email "Wildman" Steve Brill a day before the start of the class. No-call/no-show creates an inconvenience to all participants since we can’t tell if absentees are having transportation issues, and this delays the start of the tour/class.

Kindly note that price posted is our suggested donation only.

Still have questions? Ask the community.

Refund Policy

Participants can cancel the night before an event and get a refund.

If the participant failed to show up in the tour or failed to notify about their absence the night before the class, they will be required to pay a $25 penalty per person before being allowed on another tour.


Google Map

"Wildman" Steve Brill

All classes at this location

At Dykeman St. and Broadway, not inside Inwood Hill Park.

Start Dates (6)
Start Date Time Teacher # Sessions Price
11:45am - 3:45pm Eastern Time "Wildman" Steve Brill 1 $20
11:45am - 3:45pm Eastern Time "Wildman" Steve Brill 1 $10
11:45am - 3:45pm Eastern Time "Wildman" Steve Brill 1 $10
11:45am - 3:45pm Eastern Time "Wildman" Steve Brill 1 $20
11:45am - 3:45pm Eastern Time "Wildman" Steve Brill 1 $10
Start Date Time Teacher # Sessions Price
11:45am - 3:45pm Eastern Time "Wildman" Steve Brill 1 $20

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School: "Wildman" Steve Brill

Foraging expert Steve Brill has shared his foraging wisdom at schools, museums, parks departments, environmental organizations, and with scout troops since 1982. He’s written three books and an app, stars in a DVD and maintains a website.

His History with Foraging 
As part of his exercise regime,...

Read more about "Wildman" Steve Brill

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