Few bands ever get to be as famous as the Beatles. But sometimes with fame comes dangers and in December 1980 the Beatles star John Lennon was murdered by Central Park. His ashes were then scattered there by his widow, Ono, and the place was transformed into a memorial and renamed as the "Strawberry Fields" in Lennon's honor.

Central Park is one of the most famous and interesting city parks in the world and has many things to see and discover. It is a park with guided tours (including pay-what-you-want tours), events, markets, memorials, an actual Egyptian obelisk (called Cleopatra's Needle), and much more. Go in the winter and Central Park comes alive after the first snowfall.


What To Know Of the Strawberry Fields Memorial

The Strawberry Fields have been built as a living memorial rather than a statue. They are a 2.5 acre landscaped section of Central Park designed by Bruce Kelly and is named after the Beatles' song "Strawberry Fields Forever" (also written by Lennon). The song was named after a children's home in the Beatles' hometown of Liverpool called Strawberry Field.

  • Named: After Lennon's Song "Strawberry Fields"

The Strawberry Fields were dedicated on October 9, 1985, on what would have been John Lennon's 45th birthday by Ono and mayor Ed Koch.

  • Opened: October 9, 1985
  • Entrance: On Central Park West At West 72nd Street
  • Designated: A Quiet Zone

Strawberry Fields is lined with tall elm tree, shrubs, flowers and rocks and has been designated as a quiet zone within Central Park.

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The Imagine Mosaic

The memorial is set out in a triangle that falls away on the two sides of the park. The main focal point of the memorial is a circular path mosaic of inlaid stones. Only one word is formed by the mosaic "Imagine". It is the focal point and gathering space for the many visitors paying homage.

"Imagine all the people.

Livin' life in peace.


You may say I'm a dreamer.

But I'm not the only one.

I hope someday you'll join us.

And the world will be as one."

- John Lennon "Imagine"

The word has been pulled from the title of Lennon's most famous song "Imagine." The mosaic is black and white while the song it depicts evokes a vision and hope for a world without strife, war, and conflict.

  • Imagine: Lennon's Song Envisioning Peace And Harmony In the World

The mosaic was created by Italian craftsmen and was given as a gift from the city of Naples. The mosaic is in the Portuguese pavement style that's based on Greco-Roman design.

  • Gift: The Imagine Mosaic Was A Gift From the City of Naples

There is also a bronze plaque at lists out the over 120 countries that planted flowers and donated money for the maintenance of the memorial.

Related: We're Guiding You Through A Walking Tour Of Central Park, To Help You Explore All The Best Parts

John Lennon, Yoko Ono, and The Dakota

John Lennon was an Englishman born in the Scouse city of Liverpool in England. He was a singer, songwriter, musician, and peace activist. He married the Japanese singer, Yoko Ono, and they lived together in just next to Central Park in the building called, The Dakota. One day while returning to his house with Ono, John Lennon was gunned down and murdered.

  • John Lennon: Singer, Songwriter, Musician, and Peace Activist
  • Lived: 1940 to 1980
  • Yoko Ono: Lennon's Window (She Still Lives In Their Home, The Dakota, By Central Park)

Lennon's wife has had an influence in the creation of the park and has contributed financially for its landscaping and upkeep. She conceived of a memorial that could invite countries from all over the world so that they could contribute plants and great an international garden of peace. She knew her late husband would not have wanted a traditional memorial (like a statue).

Every year, pilgrims come and pay their respects to Strawberry Fields. Go on October 9 and one will see visitors and fans from the world over flocking to pay homage to this Beatles' legacy. Next time in Central Park, bring a flower and lay it in memory of John Lennon and the dream of world peace he sang about and inspired people to dear to dream about.

Next time in England, visit Liverpool - the hometown of the Beatles. There one can see the original Strawberry Field and the childhood homes of the Beatles. There are guided Beatles tours one can book while in Liverpool.