Beastie Boy emcee Adam “MCA” Yauch inspired generations of music lovers to fight — either for their right to party or for the rights of Tibetans. In return for his years of activism and music, fans fought for the right to name a Brooklyn playground after him.
Yauch was a Brooklyn native who grew up on State Street. Initially reports surfaced that fellow Beastie Boy Ad-Rock was working with the NYC Parks Department to christen State Street Park basketball courts (where Yauch used to hang out) for the late rapper. The movement to rename the park grew, with fans getting onboard with the plan thanks to a post on the Brooklyn Heights Blog that gained steam on Facebook, with efforts shifting to the adjacent Palmetto Playground. According to a press release, Yauch learned to ride a bicycle in the park that will now bear his name.
Yauch died from throat cancer a year ago this Saturday at the age of 47, only weeks after the Beastie Boys were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.