Mission Dolores Park is bordered n. and s. by 18th and 20th sts. and e. and w. by Dolores and Church sts. The rectangular swath of Dolores Park, San Francisco's “front yard,” is one of the city's best-loved green spaces as well as the heart of the culturally diverse Mission District. Named for the Mission Dolores, which stands across 18th Street, the park occupies land that was once a Jewish cemetery and later served as a refugee camp for residents made homeless as a result of the 1906 earthquake and fire.
The park features expansive green lawns shaded by stately date palms. Recreational facilities include two soccer fields, six tennis courts, a basketball court, a clubhouse and the Helen Diller Playground. From the park's southwest corner at 20th and Church streets there's a great view of the downtown skyline.
Although dwarfed in size by Golden Gate Park, this is one of the most popular spots in the city to chill, picnic or just stretch out on the grass on a sunny afternoon. It's also the site of numerous weekend festivals, performances and cultural events. Following major renovations in 2015 and early 2016, the park has updated landscaping and lights, new restrooms and picnic areas, resurfaced tennis and basketball courts, a “bike polo” court and an off-leash dog play area.