Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Open House New York Picks

My recommendations for Open House New York, which is this Saturday and Sunday. It's the third year of this cool event that lets you get a behind-the-scenes look at many of New York's historic private, government and corporate buildings. My picks here are some of the unusual places that you can't usually get access to.

Floyd Bennett Field
Ryan Visitor Center, Brooklyn
Sat: 9am-5pm; Guided tour Saturday at 10am.
Sun: 9am-5pm
Crowds used to gather at NYC's first airport to cheer pioneer aviators such as Howard Hughes. Take the rare opportunity to visit the site's historic control tower and the underground access tunnel that led to the runways.

Old Croton Aqueduct Walking Tour
Sun: 9:30 am
Reserve a spot by emailing Meet at the SW corner of The Great Lawn, Central Park: benches between the lawn and the Delacorte Theatre
Walk the path of one of America's great early engineering achievements, and NY's first source of plentiful, pure water. Organized by Friends of Old Croton Aqueduct.

Ellis Island's South Side - reservation only Update - reservations are no longer being accepted.
Sat: 9:30, 11 am, 12:30, 2 pm, 3:30 pm to Sun: 9:30, 11 am, 12:30, 2 pm, 3:30 pm
Reservations: 212-363-3206 ext. 580. Meet at the information desk, Ellis Island Immigration Museum, Ellis Island
Tour the grounds of the abandoned Ellis Island hospital where 1 million immigrants were treated between 1900-1954. Wear sturdy, closed-toed shoes. No children under age 16 will be permitted.

Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Arch at Grand Army Plaza
Flatbush Avenue and Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn
Sat: 11am-4pm
Sun: 11am-4pm
NYC's grandest arch, built in the style of Paris’ Arc de Triomphe, commemorates the Union forces of the Civil War. Climb up to the roof for views of the surrounding park and skyline.

Grand Central Terminal
East 42nd St & Park Avenue, Meet at Main Concourse Information Booth New York
Sat: 10am-5pm
Sun: 10am-5pm
Tours with renovation architect 10 am & 12 pm, reservations
Tour the Beaux-Arts icon and learn its history and secrets.

Grand Lodge of Masons
71 West 23rd Street, New York
Sat: 10am-4pm
Sun: Closed
View the lavishly decorated rooms of the Freemasons meeting place, which reflect this ancient organization's unique history and mission.

High Line Cell Phone Tour
820 Washington Street, New York
Oct 7, 2006 & Oct 8, 2006, All day/night
Self-guided cell phone tour discusses various stopping points along the High Line, the disused freight rail currenlty undergoing conversion into NYC's first elevated park. Dial the main phone number 888-7-LOOK-UP starting Saturday, Oct 7th. Each stop has its own three-digit extension. Organized by the Friends of the High Line.
Also: High Line Viewing
Sat: 11am-5pm; Sun: 12pm-5pm
Project design presentations, 1-4 pm on the hour.
This disused, elevated rail viaduct is being converted to public open space. View the progress from the platform of a former meatpacking building.

Astoria Pool
19th Street & 23rd Avenue, Astoria
Sat: 10am-1pm
Sun: Closed
Meet at pool entrance at 19th Street and 24th Avenue. Tours at 10 am, 11 am & 12 pm.
Tour this 330-ft Art Deco pool's underground infrastructure with its innovative filtration system, orginal details and spectacular East River views.

1 comment:

ryn said...

did you get to any of those sites? i wanted to do *all* of them, but i ended up hitting about 6 sites total. my favorite: the kushner residence.