Top photograph by Rhonda Dorsett, Courtesy of St. John the Divine
As the holidays get closer and closer, we’e rounded up some unique ways to celebrate with our Untapped New York picks for things to do this week. Walk in a parade of boomboxes through the East and West Village, explore a sprawling archive of rare Tiffany glass, shop for strange and unusual items at the Coney Island holiday market, and discover more ways to engage with the city this week!
Friday, December 13th
Go behind-the-scenes at the Tiffany Glass Archives, part of the largest collection of Tiffany glass in the world. On this special, small group tour, guests will get to see and even touch rare and priceless pieces of glass. Hundreds of thousands of pieces of glass salvaged from the Tiffany studio in Corona when it closed in the 1930s are now housed in this archive inside an unmarked warehouse in Long Island City.
Learn about the curatorial practices at a free talk at the Bronx Museum. Curator Kimberli Gant will talk about her curatorial experience working in ethnic-specific, contemporary, and encyclopedic museums. Gant is the McKinnon Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk, VA.
Experience a new way to party with 5D clubbing at ZeroSpace as Caravan Gitane presents CARAVAN Je T’aime: A Journey of Cosmic Love. Five different artists will perform amongst the innovative and cutting-edge new media installations on display in ZeroSpace’s 25,000 square-foot digital playground.
Stop by the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital’s interactive holiday pop-up in Tribeca to celebrate 16 years of the Thanks and Giving® campaign. This Friday and Saturday at 393 Broadway, New York City. St. Jude’s will present the #GiveThanks Immersive Experience. Through an immersive gallery of life-sized projections and sculptures of patient artwork, as well as Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) that brings patient stories and experiences to attendees firsthand, all who enter can connect with and visualize the benefits of the lifesaving work taking place at St. Jude.
Join the 92nd Street Y for a family friendly extravaganza of music, glow sticks, latkes, and light at a Glow-in-the-Dark Chanukah Dinner! There will be singing, a lighting of the Chanukiah, and blessings of love and light followed by a catered Kosher dinner by Chef Russ Moss (all food is nut and sesame free). Led by Rebecca Schoffer, Director of Jewish Family Engagement and Shababa, the dinner will be followed by dancing, and of course, glow sticks galore.
Saturday, December 14th
Uncover the secrets of Central Park on an expert led walking tour with Untapped New York. On this tour of New York City’s most famous green space, guests will learn about the hidden stories behind the park’s most iconic sites, the corruption and scandal that surrounding the early days of the Central Park Zoo, and more fascinating stories. Along the way, discover surprises like a survey bolt lefty behind from the planning of the street grid and a nifty navigational tool built into the park’s design.
Explore Ellis Island’s abandoned hospital complex on a behind-the-scenes hard hat tour. This site, which is more than a century old, has been closed to the public for more than sixty years. After serving as a hospital for the immigration station on the island’s north side, the complex became a field office for the FBI, a Coast Guard training facility, and served many other uses. On this tour, you will get to go inside areas that are usually off-limits to the public including the former morgue, laundry facilities, and more!
See a production of Peter & the Wolf with Isaac Mizrahi at the Guggenheim Museum. Mizrahi narrates and directs Sergei Prokofiev’s charming children’s classic. Ensemble Signal performs the music, and the cast, wearing costumes by Mizrahi, performs choreography by John Heginbotham, bringing the 30-minute story to life for the young and young at heart.
Sunday, December 15th
Discover what remains from the two World’s Fairs hosted in Queens on Untapped New York’s Remnants of the World’s Fairs Tour at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. From an iconic abandoned structure designed by the famous architect Philip Johnson, to a portrait of Robert Moses by Andy Warhol, this expert led tour will reveal all of the treasures left behind from both the 1939 and 1964 World’s Fairs.
Search for an unusual gift at Coney Island’s Strange and Unusual Holiday Market. From noon until 7pm (and noon -6pm on Sunday) browse a selection of goods from local artists, jewelry makers, purveyors of vintage goods, and more diverse vendors at Sideshows by the Seashore in Coney Island.
Photograph by Taylor Davidson, Courtesy of Unsilent Night
Take part in Phil Kline’s Unsilent Night. Starting at 6:00pm, composer Phil Kline will lead a massive chorus of boomboxes from the West Village to the East Village in this 27th annual holiday presentation. The procession begins at the arch in Washington Square Park and ends in Tompkins Square Park. Phil Kline will hand out a limited number of vintage boomboxes from his collection—and cassettes for those who bring their own. The public is strongly encouraged to bring their own boomboxes or sound-blasters, and to pre-download the track here!
Monday, December 16th
Fill up on potato pancakes at the 11th Annual Latke Festival, hosted this year at the Brooklyn Museum. The Latke Festival is a charity event organized by Great Performances that celebrates the best and most creative potato pancakes in our city. Proceeds from the festival go to The Sylvia Center, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that focuses on teaching cooking in underserved communities and inspiring children, teens and families to eat well. Enjoy amazing food and drink, dance to a live DJ and vote for the Best Latke of all! You can purchase tickets here!
Looking for things to do with kids? Watch a holiday classic on the big screen inside one of New York City’s glamorous 20th century movie palaces. The opulent United Palace, formerly a Loew’s Wonder Theater, will screen the movie Elf. The screening will be preceded by a meet and greet with Santa Claus and other festive surprises. If you are an Untapped New York Insider, you can attend this screening for free! Not an Insider yet? Become a member today to gain access to behind-the-scenes tours and special events all year long.
Wednesday, December 18th
Immerse yourself in the narrative and visuals of Zerospace, a hi-tech digital art show. Embark on a journey to another dimension where you will led led by special agents through a mysterious portal that has opened up next toPenn Station. When you emerge on the other side you will be surrounding by mesmerizing art installations and strange creatures. An augmented reality sandbox, an infinity room of laser lights, and shape shifting mirrors are some of the fun surprises you will find on your journey. If you are an Untapped New York Insider, you can join this experience for free! Not an Insider yet? Become a member today to gain access to behind-the-scenes tours and special events all year long.
Explore the depths of the New York City subway system on Untapped New York’s Underground Tour. As you weave through stations past and present, you will learn about the history of the subway from its birth at City Hall Park to the way it is today. As you travel, you will discover art installations hidden in plain sight, abandoned stations and more!
Thursday, December 19th
Discover the Secrets of Grand Central Terminal on this expert led tour by Untapped New York. Whether you are a daily commuter, or just visiting for the first time, you are sure to find something surprising. Hidden tennis courts, a secret staircase, a forgotten mural, and a major design flaw in the main concourse are a few of the secrets you will learn about!
Photograph by Rhonda Dorsett, Courtesy of St. John the Divine
Experience Paul Winter’s 40th Annual Winter Solstice Celebration at St. John the Divine. The event features musicians of the Paul Winter Consort, vocalists, dancers and drummers. A dazzling extravaganza of music and dance, the performances offer a contemporary take on ancient solstice rituals, when people gathered together on the longest night of the year to welcome the return of the sun and the birth of the new year. This year marks the 40th year for the event, as well as the 50th anniversary for the Paul Winter Consort.