It's a machine called an AERA-vator, one of the tools the Central Park Conservancy uses to keep the hundreds of acres of lawns in the park healthy and looking great.
"If we zoomed in and got really close, the tines on it actually oscillate or wiggle back and forth so they help fracture the soil to help de-compact it from all the use it has gotten throughout the year," said Zachary Holm, turf care manager for the Central Park Conservancy.
Holm said a lot of work goes on behind the scenes to take care of the lawns. Some are left open during the winter months, while others – such as the Great Lawn – are fenced off for the season.
"It allows it to recuperate a little bit obviously, but then a lawn left open during the winter time, certainly takes a beating, grass – while it might be green – throughout the winter isn't growing," said Holm, who added that steps will be taken to regenerate those lawns as well.
Holm said one thing the lawns missed this winter was snow, and colder temperatures.
"In a perfect world, we'd get a nice snowfall at the end of November just as lawns were closing, and that snowfall would stay for the whole winter, it actually insulates the grass, it provides a nice little blanket, helps prevent any wear for the lawns that are open," said Holm who says to keep the lawns healthy, cooperation from visitors can go a long way.
"Everything that the public can do, to staying on the paths, to even taking out trash is another one that really does help with lawns because that trash really needs to be picked up before any lawn maintenance can be done as well," said Holm.
New Yorkers looking to spend more time in the park this spring can also volunteer with the conservancy at centralparknyc.org/volunteer.