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The City of Watertown, New York, fosters an environment that ensures the health, safety and general welfare of the community. The Parks and Recreation department strives to provide a broad range of recreation programs and facilities to enhance the quality of life for the city. There are 574 dedicated acres of parks and playgrounds which offer diverse and unique recreational opportunities. The department creates opportunities for all age groups to participate in recreational and leisure activities. The neighborhood parks form the cornerstone of the City's park system and include facilities such as The Veteran's River Walk, Waterworks Park, Bicentennial Park, and Marble Street Park are all located along the magnificent Black River providing scenic views, trails, and picnic areas. Watertown 's historic Thompson Park serves as a central gathering place for a variety of community events. The Park is an Olmstead design and is home to many scenic trails. The park is also home to the NYS Zoo where one can see a collection of animals that are native to the area.