This park named for civil rights leader Bayard Rustin is the perfect park to visit for Black History Month or really any other month of the year. It’s also a great place to go if you’re looking to play some afternoon hoops. 

Bayard Rustin Park. West Chester, PA. February.

Vibe: He may have been nearly left out of national civil rights history but Bayard Rustin, at least in name, is well remembered in West Chester. There’s Rustin High School, Rustin Walk, and Bayard Rustin Park.

Bayard Rustin Park, located just a block off of High Street and on Rosedale Avenue, is a borough park but sometimes it feels more like an extension of West Chester University. The basketball courts are usually dominated by college students looking for a pick-up game while, the playground equipment tucked in the back goes mostly unused. If you are in the neighborhood, you should stop by, as long as you aren’t looking to shoot around you should have

“The proof that one truly believes is in action.”

-Bayard Rustin

History: The park, then known as Walnut Street Park, opened in the summer of 1939, making it one of West Chester’s older parks. In 1998 the park was rededicated and renamed in honor of Civil Rights leader and West Chester-native Bayard Rustin.  

You can learn more about Mr. Rustin’s interesting life here, and here and here.

Bayard Rustin Park. West Chester, PA.

Key features: 2-full basketball court, baseball diamond, playground equipment, swings (kid and toddler), benches, picnic tables

Events:  Historically several events have been help here. The West Chester borough website lists a basketball tournament and art camps. Old Facebook posts indicate there was once a “Welcome Back Block Party” and a “Pack it Up, Pass it On” event held in collaboration with the University but it seems both events have since moved away from the park.

If anyone knows of active events going on in the park, leave them in the comments and I will update.

Location: E. Rosedale and Walnut St. I thought parking would be difficult being so close to the college but we found a spot pretty easily. This could be different during the school day.

Keep in touch:

Bayard Rustin Park. West Chester, PA.

Have an idea for Bayard Rustin Park or any of the West Chester parks? Check out this post on how to get involved.

Not the right park for you? Explore another.

Plus, West Chester has a new walking tour and five local runs you have to try at least once – and one walkway made safe again thanks to one neighbor’s actions


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