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Did you know there is a tennis court inside Grand Central? Or that the ceiling is backwards? Untapped Cities is bringing back our popular “Secrets of Grand Central” tour led Tamara Agins from the New York City Department of City Planning and author of our popular series on the secrets of Grand Central. Bonus: the tour ends at the Campbell Apartments, the Gilded Age office and salon of tycoon John W. Campbell, now converted into a soaring hidden bar where you can stop in for a cocktail.

Join us on Sunday, August 16th at 1:30pm, tickets are limited:

The story of Grand Central Terminal is that of New York City itself: the structure embodies the social, cultural, economic and technological evolution around it.  It is one of great men, feuding architects, ingenuity, rejuvenation, secrets and surprises.  On this tour, we will tell you these stories – about what once was, what could have been, and what can be; about the struggle to save and restore Grand Central as preserved icon of past, and of challenge to ensure that it serves New York’s future. We will show you what it was like in the booming age of the railroad, as a rundown embarrassment, and as a renovated jewel at the center of the city. Together, we will explore the interesting and unique spaces produced for and by it. Whether you pass through it every day on your morning commute or it’s your first time in the Beaux Arts beauty, you are sure to leave having learned, seen, or experienced something new and extraordinary.

Check out more Untapped Cities events here, including tours of the Remnants of Penn Station as well as an exploration down into the underbelly of the Woolworth Building.

Woolworth Building-Lobby-Interior-Irving National Bank-Vault-Cass Gilbert-NYC

Our acclaimed Untapped Cities behind-the-scenes tour of New York City’s Woolworth Building is returning for the fall on September 16th, and tickets are nearly sold out! The tour features an hour-long walkthrough of the historic skyscraper’s gorgeous lobby as well as its expansive basement, areas normally closed off to the public.

The Woolworth Building, built in 1911, is one of those few New York City icons of the past century that has stood the test of time. While so many early 20th century buildings are currently dwarfed by the city’s modern skyscrapers, the Woolworth remains one of the 20 tallest buildings in the city. Once called the ‘Cathedral of Commerce,‘ the building’s unique Gothic-inspired architecture is a sight to behold, both inside and out. This Untapped Cities exclusive tour, exploring areas of the building not on any other public tour, will take visitors deep within the skyscraper’s foundations.

The tour will be led by Lisa Renz, a preservationist working directly on the Woolworth Building and Roy Suskin of The Witkoff Group who manages the building. In addition to a guided visit through the spectacular lobby, we will also visit the cellar level where the bank vault is located and where the former entrances to the subway are, the sub-cellar jam-packed full of machinery, and the boiler room, an immense space that one housed the engine room that once powered and lighted the building.

See more images of some of the great architecture you’ll see on the tour. See our full list of Untapped Cities events here.

GeneralWinnerShianneDierkes_000The New York Renaissance Faire. Image via renfair.com

August is in full swing next week with events from the Museum of the City of New York, Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros at Celebrate Brooklyn!, the New York Renaissance Faire and a cabaret boat tour.

Monday, August 3rd

The Museum of the City of New York presents Noxious New York: Race, Class & Garbage, part two of a series on urban development and pollution: ‘Garbage and the City: Two Centuries of Dirt, Debris, and Disposal,’ led by historian Julie Sze.

The Urban Park Rangers are hosting weekly obstacle-challenge Adventure Courses in Queens’ Alley Pond Park, for people of all ages and physical ability. The next outing takes place on August 9th and registration opens August 3rd.

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freshkils park-NYC-Untapped CitiesFreshkills Park. Image via freshkillspark.org

August is upon us! Ring out the last few days of July with the return of Shakespeare in the Park, a march through the NYC Department of Records, National Cheesecake Day, and the Freshkills Park Discovery Day.

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Broadway-Madison Square Park-Victory Arch-NYCYes, this is New York City!

On August 6th, Untapped Cities founder Michelle Young will give a talk on her recently released book Broadway at the Mid-Manhattan branch of the New York Public Library. At 6:30pm Michelle will walk through the most surprising finds she came across from the collection nearly 200 vintage photographs published in this book about the history of Broadway as a street, tracing its evolution from the Native American era until today.

Get tickets below, which are free for this event, or purchase ticket plus an autographed book at a discounted rate (book to be picked up at the event). Read on for an excerpt of the book Broadway.

The Mid-Manhattan Library is located at 455 5th Avenue at 40th Street. Event begins at 6:30pm.

The Museum at Eldridge Street. Image by Peter Aaron

This upcoming Wednesday July 22nd is our special summer after hours event at the Museum at Eldridge Street. Starting at 8pm, the stunning sanctuary of the Eldridge Street Synagogue and the Museum at Eldridge Street will be opened for a wine reception for Untapped Cities guests. We’ll open with a 15 minute talk about the Lower East Side religious institution by Rachel Serkin, Family & Education Program Associate, at the Museum at Eldridge Street and then guests will be free to explore, mingle and imbibe. The Untapped Cities staff looks forward to seeing you at the event!

You’ll step into the footsteps of the synagogue’s immigrant founders who finally got to celebrate their religion gloriously and openly in the free land of America. Swap historical facts and quirky architectural detail over wine. Be on the lookout for the parts of unrestored lath and plaster in the building’s balcony which reveal how the building is put together, with brick, lath, plaster, even pieces of horse-hair, used to bind the plaster.

Tickets are still available for the wine reception, and are 25% off for Untapped Cities readers using discount code UNTAPPED.