(credit: VANDERLEI ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
Summer is in full swing and why be indoors to play basketball? If you’re looking for competitive pickup games, developing skills, making new friends or exploring other courts, the East Bay has many great outdoor basketball courts to hang out and enjoy the great outdoors. In fact, one park in Oakland has one of the most famous outdoor basketball courts in the country. Here are five of the best outdoor basketball courts in the East Bay.
4201 Central Parkway
Dublin, CA 94568
Dublin’s Emerald Glen Park is a beautifully maintained 40-acre park featuring baseball, soccer and cricket fields, a lighted skateboard park and lighted tennis and basketball courts. A popular spot for pickup games in the Tri-Valley, there are two full basketball courts adjacent to the highly rated skateboard park. Located off Highway 580 at Tassajara Road, the courts are closer to Gleason Drive, with plenty of onsite parking available, in addition to restrooms and drinking fountains. The City of Dublin has future plans to expand the park to include a community center and recreation and aquatic center.
40000 Paseo Padre Parkway
Fremont, CA 94538
One of the East Bay’s most popular municipal parks, Central Park covers 450 acres along the shores of the 83-acre Lake Elizabeth. In addition to two full-size basketball courts, the park also features a dog park, six softball fields, 10 soccer fields, 18 tennis courts, three snack bars, clean restrooms and drinking fountains. Central Park is on Stephenson Boulevard and can be reached either by Highways 880 or 238. The two basketball courts are located next to the parking lot between the Central Park Softball Complex and the soccer fields.
250 10th St.
Oakland, CA 94607
Along the southern edge of Oakland’s Chinatown, Lincoln Square Park is among the best hardcourts in the city. Featuring a rec center, a Chinese junk as a playground structure, the park also has one large full-size basketball court and two slightly smaller full-size courts. All three courts can be found along 11th Street with designed parking along 10th Street and additional street parking around the park’s perimeter. The rec center has restrooms and drinking fountains and public transportation is close by, with the Lake Merritt BART station about a five-minute walk away.
3612 Webster St.
Oakland, CA 94609
Of all the outdoor basketball courts in the East Bay, easily the most famous are the courts at Mosswood Park. A proving ground for some the best basketball players to ever play the game, the park is so well known that it’s been featured in video games, documentaries and Nike commercials. Former NBA players Jason Kidd, Gary Payton, Brian Shaw, Bill Russell and Paul Silas as well as Oakland streetball legend Demetrius “Hook” Mitchell and former MLB player Dwight Gooden all displayed their world class ball hawking skills at Mosswood. Three years, ago the basketball courts were refurbished with funds from the Good Tidings Foundation, Golden State Warriors and Kaiser-Permanente. Today the courts are painted in Warriors blue with team logs at the center of both courts, along with new Plexiglass backboards, new hoops and nets. Mosswood Park is located near the intersection of Highways 580 and 24 and a 15-minute walk from the MacArthur BART station.
2800 Park St.
Berkeley, CA 94702
One of the best spots for outdoor pickup basketball games in Berkeley is San Pablo Park. The oldest park in Berkeley, San Pablo features two softball fields and a soccer practice field, six lighted tennis courts, a playground and three basketball courts. The courts at San Pablo Park are a popular spot for members of Meetup’s women’s pickup basketball, with nearly 170 members. The park is one mile from the Ashby BART station and the Berkeley Aquatic Park off Highway 580.