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Local Park Offers Adventures On The Ropes

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A Queens park has a adventure course that features a variety of unique physical challenges that add up to no walk in the park. NY1's Roger Clark filed the following report.

In Queens's Alley Pond Park, visitors can have an interesting way to start the day. Strapped into a safety harness, they can climb to the top of a 50-feet-tall wooden platform, make their way across a beam that might as well be a tightrope and then jump off and drop all the way back down.

"You were on something called a catwalk, and it's an exercise in balance," says urban park ranger John McCoy.

The catwalk is just one of the activities at the park's adventure course, which opened two summers ago. Since then, more than 10,000 visitors have experience challenges like the swing shot, which raises people some 50 feet off the ground and then sends them into a free fall.

The course is not meant to scare people, but rather lets groups and individuals of all ages to work through physically and intellectually-demanding situations, promoting team building and problem solving skills.

"This is yet another way to come in an explore the park, and also learn something about yourself, and learn something about your group," says Urban Park Rangers director Sarah Aucoin.

Not all the activities dangle people 50 feet in the air. Other activities are closer to the ground, like a boulder wall that goes vertically instead of horizontally.

There is also something called "Moby Deck," where a group tries to balance itself on something that looks like a picnic table while tied in a human knot.

In another activity called the "Wild Woozy," where two people shuffle across a thin cable supporting each other's weight.

"We were trusting each other, you and I. If you let go, I would of fallen. If I let go, you would of fallen," says McCoy.

Which eventually happened...If you want to give the course a try...there are free programs on Sundays through November...and it will also be open on Memorial Day. For more information, www.nyc.gov/parks

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