Park Rules and Regulations



A. APPLICABILITY: These rules and regulations shall apply to all parks, playgrounds, school grounds, and other public open spaces in the town of Brookline (hereinafter, public areas).

B. AUTHORITY: These rules and regulations are adopted and promulgated under the authority vested in the Park and Recreation Commission and the Board of Selectmen under Massachusetts General Laws, and Chapter 32 of the Acts of 1980.

C. HOURS OF OPERATION: People may enter and use public areas from dawn to dusk unless otherwise permitted. Hard court play areas are open from 7 am – dusk Monday – Friday and 8:00 am – dusk Saturday, Sunday and holidays. Lit athletic facilities are open until 10:00 pm.

No person shall enter or remain in a park without the permission of the Parks and Open Space Director when such park is closed to the public.


  1. All persons shall enter or leave public areas through designated entrances and exits only.
  2. All persons shall comply with applicable law, including Town By-Laws.
  3. No person shall be attired in such a fashion as constitutes indecent exposure.


The following activities are prohibited in public areas.

  1. Having possession of, or discharging, any explosive, weapon, firearm, air gun, or firework, or throwing any stone or missile.
  2. Smoking as defined by Art. 8.23 of the Town’s Bylaws.
  3. Engaging in disorderly behavior or creating a disturbance of the peace, as set forth in Article 8.5 of the Town’s Bylaws.
  4. Drinking or being in possession of or under the influence of any alcohol or drugs.
  5. Playing any music or using amplified sound loud enough to annoy others.
  6. Damaging, misusing, or removing property or equipment from any public area, including, but not limited to, any tree, bush, plant, turf, rock, gravel, building, structure, bench, fence, or sign.
  7. Injuring or disturbing any animal, setting any animal trap or snare, or having or taking the possession of any animal, bird, nest, or eggs not one’s own.
  8. Picking any flower or plant.
  9. Sitting, standing, lying, or climbing on any object not intended for such purpose.
  10. Depositing any article or debris of any kind in any public area. All trash and recycling must be placed in proper receptacles.
  11. Having a dog not held by a leash or held by a leash exceeding seven feet in length, except in public areas that have been established as off-leash dog runs by the Park and Recreation Commission under Section 8.6.7 of the Town of Brookline’s bylaws and in compliance with the rules and regulations set forth for the Green Dog Program. Dog owners are also required to pick up after their dogs under Section 8.6.7. Dogs are never allowed on/in any of the following: playgrounds, water play areas, synthetic turf fields, tennis courts, basketball courts, conservation areas and passive parks as posted. Dogs are prohibited from drinking from water fountains, unless designed/intended for such use.
  12. Panhandling that is threatening.
  13. Gambling or playing any game of chance.
  14. Playing sports outside of areas specifically designated for such uses.
  15. Playing archery or golf outside of designated town events or programs.
  16. Swimming, wading, or boating in any body of water.
  17. Blocking of water fountains or play area sprinkler drains.
  18. Placing any snow or ice removed from private property in any public area, including any sidewalk or roadway.
  19. Kindling, building, maintaining, or using a fire except in designated grill areas except by permit (see below). No open or ground campfires are allowed in any public area.

No person shall conduct any activity for which a permit is required unless such permit has been issued; all terms and conditions of such permit have been or are being complied with; and the permit is kept on hand at the event, so as to be available for inspection by Brookline Police or Parks and Recreation Department employees. The permit may contain a requirement for an indemnity bond to protect the town from liability of any kind or character and to protect town property from damage. Town and/or permitted uses have priority over all other uses. The following activities require permits:

  1. Organized sports, activities, clubs, groups, meet-ups, matches or youth/collegiate/adult athletics.
  2. Special events, such as parties, picnics, gatherings, weddings, demonstrations, theatrical or entertainment performances, involving groups of 15 or more people.
  3. Amplified sound.
  4. Commercial activity, including selling or offering for sale any food, drink, or merchandise of any description in any public area or on any sidewalk or roadway.
  5. Kindling, building, maintaining, or using a fire in designated grill areas.
  6. Filming and photoshoots.
  7. Posting a sign, symbol, banner, notice, placard or advertising device in any public area.
  8. Riding or driving animals.
  9. Pitching a tent, canvass or erecting a structure.
  10. Erecting any type of permanent or temporary art.


  1. No person shall drive any motor vehicles in or through any public area except on designated roadways. Roadways or parking areas may be closed to motor vehicles at such times and in such places as determined by the Director of the Parks and Open Space Division.
  2. No person shall park any motor vehicle in any public area except in designated parking areas, and only during normal hours of operation. No person shall park in violation of a posted notice; on any grassy area; in public areas during a snowstorm; or anywhere so as to impede snow removal operations.
  3. No person shall operate a motor vehicle at a speed greater than 15 miles per hour in any public area, with the exception of Riverdale Parkway from Chestnut Circle to Washington Street, where the speed limit shall be 25 miles per hour.
  4. No person shall wash, clean, polish, repair or perform maintenance upon any vehicle in any public area.
  5. No person shall operate any motorized devices, carts, snowmobiles or aerial devices in or through any public area.


  1. Any vehicles found in violation of any of the provisions above may be moved by or under the direction of the Town of Brookline at the full expense of the owner, to a place where parking is allowed or to any area designated by the Town for storage, and a parking violation ticket will be issued.
  2. No person in any public area shall fail to comply with any reasonable direction given by any authorized employee of the Town of Brookline.
  3. The Brookline Police Department is specifically authorized to enforce these rules and regulations.
  4. Violation of any of these rules and regulations is punishable under the provisions of G.L. c. 45, s. 24, with a fine, if not otherwise stated, of not more than twenty dollars. Other penalties and fines may apply.

1st Amendment and approval - 5/11/64

2nd Amendment and approval - 6/14/65

Revised and approved - 6/13/66*

Revised and approved - 5/09/68

Approved - 6/10/69

Revised and Approved – 5/12/03

Revised and Approved – 6/16/15

* In School Committee Meeting on October 17, 1966, it was VOTED: That the Park and Recreation Commission be requested to act as the agent of the School Committee, except when otherwise requested by the Superintendent of Schools, in enforcing the same rules and regulations on school grounds as it does on other public areas, as provided in that commission’s RULES AND REGULATIONS FOR USE OF PARKS, PLAYGROUNDS, SCHOOL GROUNDS AND OTHER PUBLIC AREAS UNDER THE JURISDICTION OF THE PARK AND RECREATION COMMISSION, as revised and approved on June 13, 1966, by the Park and Recreation Commission.