Every week, Untapped Cities brings you behind-the-scenes of some of New York City’s most iconic landmarks and little known locations. From uncovering the secrets of the iconic Grand Central Terminal to exploring an abandoned hospital on Ellis Island or walking through the exhibits of New York’s oldest museum, rediscover your city this week on an expert-led Untapped Cities tour!
Thursday, June 27th
Tour the historic Greenwich Village home of sculptor Chaim Gross. On this guided tour of Gross’ 1830s townhouse, Insiders will visit the first-floor sculpture studio and gallery, renovated in 1963 by the artist and later restored in 2017-18, as well as the Gross Foundation’s special exhibition space on the second floor. Insiders will also gain access to the third floor living and dining spaces which are filled with hundreds of works from Gross’ extensive private art collection. Pieces featured in the Gross home include important American paintings by artists like Marsden Hartley, Willem De Kooning, and Milton Avery, as well as African, Oceanic, Pre-Columbian, and European works as well. Gross’ collection remains installed inside the townhouse just as it was when he lived there. All together, including Gross’ own sculptures, drawings, and prints,photographic archive and his personal art collection, there are 10,000 in the home. You can join this free tour if you are an Untapped Cities Insider. Not an Insider yet? Become a member today to gain access to free behind-the-scenes tour and special events all year long!
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Saturday, June 29th
- Explore the over 100-year-old contagious disease hospital, which has been abandoned since 1954
- See an exhibition by the world-renowned artist JR, who has placed life-sized historic photographs of Ellis Island immigrants on interior walls of the hospital buildings
- Visit the Laundry Building, where 3000+ pieces of laundry were washed and sanitized daily
- Discover the kitchen, autopsy room and other usually off-limits places
- Get special access inside the original morgue and long abandoned FBI offices
This summer marks the 50th Anniversary of the Stonewall Riots in Greenwich Village, an event that spurred the gay liberation movement. To commemorate this anniversary and finish off Pride Month, Untapped Cities Insiders are invited on a docent-led tour of two new exhibits and a special installation that make up Stonewall 50, a three part exhibition at the New-York Historical Society which runs through September 22nd. The exhibition is made up of three parts that include, Letting Loose and Fighting Back: LGBTQ Nightlife Before and After Stonewall, By the Force of Our Presence and Say It Loud, Out and Proud: Fifty Years of Pride. Not an Insider yet? Become a member today to gain access to free behind-the-scenes tour and special events all year long!
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- Learn about the secrets of one of NYC’s most iconic buildings
- See Grand Central’s hidden tennis courts
- Peek into the entrance of the glass walkways
- Learn about the design flaw as large as Grand Central Terminal’s main atrium
- Discover a multi-million dollars jewel hidden in plain sight and more!
- Get a comprehensive history of the past, present and future of Penn Station
- See over a dozen indoor and outdoor old-station remnants hidden in plain sight
- Learn insider navigation tips for one of the most cramped and complicated transit hubs in North America
- See never-before-seen old station photos from the collections of three photographers who photo documented Penn’s life and demolition
- Each guest will also receive a framable, reproduction ticket of the first commuter ride into Pennsylvania Station from 1910
Inside the Chambers Street station in Lower Manhattan
- Explore City Hall Park as the birthplace of the NYC subway system, including elements of the famed, decommissioned City Hall Station you can see right in the park
- Learn about the comically short route of the mythical “Subway before the Subway,” Alfred Ely Beach’s Pneumatic Transit System
- See the architectural ghosts of the now nearly forgotten, and partially abandoned, Chambers Street station then nicknamed the “Grand Central of Downtown”
- Use the 6 train as your own time machine as you ride through abandoned subway stations
- Discover the remnants of Union Station as you learn about a hidden art installation thousands of riders walk by everyday
Sunday, June 30th
Titled America’s first playground, Coney Island was a small strip of sand on Brooklyn’s south coast that became synonymous with the burlesque, the bizarre, the outlandish and the corrupt. Join, author, playwright and Untapped Cities tour guide, Justin Rivers, in a new Untapped Cities tour, The Secrets of Coney Island: Past, Present, Future, & Unknown, as you trace the steps of the two main characters from his graphic novel, The Wonder City: The Great Whale of Coney Island on their visit one hot summer in 1942. Through their eyes you’ll see what Coney Island was like at the height of its mid-century popularity.
- Unearth old secrets of the many long-gone amusement parks
- Learn about what’s in store for the hotly contested future development of the island
- Hear about the massive civic project that transformed a wasteland into an urban pleasure ground
- Learn about the curious origins of the Central Park Zoo and the corruption scandal that caused a riot
- Uncover the hidden meaning in Bethesda Terrace’s sculptures and the forbidden love that inspired the park’s most famous statue
- See the secret bolt left behind from the creation of Manhattan’s street grid
- Discover the secret navigational device that keeps pedestrians from getting lost on the park’s winding paths