Since we’ve all been living in a pandemic twilight zone, you may not have fully realized we are already in May and Mother’s Day is this Sunday. Here are our picks on what to do if you need to get on a gift, fast!

1. Offer a Gift Virtual Membership to Untapped New York Insiders!

Virtual Membership INSIDERS

We’ve been wowed by the reaction to our virtual programming during this pandemic. With up to five free events a week, ranging from live tours of places like Victorian Flatbush, Central Park, and Prospect Park, to talks about the secrets of the Brooklyn Bridge, the history of Penn Station and its future, reliving the World’s Fair, and talks with our museum partners like Museum of the City of New York, Museum at Eldridge Street, Fraunces Tavern Museum, Ellis Island Foundation, and more, there’s a ton to discover virtually with us! Insiders can also unlock our archives of virtual tours and talks that have already taken place.

“Untapped NY is part of my mental health program. Thanks for all you’re offering online.” — Debbie D., Untapped New York Insider

Coming up next week, Insiders will get to join a virtual talk to celebrate the launch of the new book Silent Cities New York: Hidden Histories of Cemeteries, a virtual tour of Queens County Farm, a virtual talk about the history of the Dyckman Farmhouse, and an opportunity to join the Waterfront Alliance Conference, Rising to Resilience. See our full calendar of upcoming events here. When the city opens up again, we will be resuming our in-person member tours while also continuing virtual experiences!

With code MOTHERSDAY, get two months free of the membership for your mom on a monthly plan (or get effectively three months free on a yearly plan!) Sign up here and put your mom’s email address in the signup so they’ll get all the communications. 

2. Get an Autographed Copy of the Secret Brooklyn Book

Cover of Secret Brooklyn

You may not be able to explore New York City in the way you used to, but we have something for you that might do the trick: our book, Secret Brooklyn with nearly 150 quirky, off-the-beaten path, and hidden spots. The book will be autographed by the authors, our founder Michelle Young and Untapped New York’s CEO Augustin Pasquet, with a dedication of your choice. The content is just like the kind you find on Untapped New York, with a great photograph of each location and an in-depth description.

Bookmark the places you want to discover when we can go back to our old lives, like a robotic church, or a hidden rooftop garden, the smallest cemetery in New York City, remnants of a lost railroad tunnel you can get a drink in, and more. There are also plenty of outdoor spots you can go discover on your own, even during coronavirus, like tracking the footprints of a Revolutionary War-era mill in Marine Park, looking for the wild parrots of Brooklyn, locating a sunken yellow submarine, or hiking on the former Ridgewood Reservoir, and more.

Get free first class shipping on the book with code STAYHOME or if you want to get it faster, select the Priority Mail option which will get to you in 1 day in the tri-state region or 2-3 days in the rest of the country. You can also pick up the book in a contactless pickup in Brooklyn.

3. Same Day Flower Delivery from Ode À La Rose

Ode a la Rose flowersPhoto courtesy Ode À La Rose

Support a local Brooklyn company by ordering your flowers from Ode à La Rose, a NYC flower delivery service owned by two Brooklynites who are transplants from France. And who knows flowers better than the French? They deliver same day in New York City, Chicago and Philadelphia, and next day delivery throughout the United States.

Ode à La Rose sources their flowers from eco-friendly farms and are working hard to make it through this pandemic, like many other local small businesses. All arrangements are hand-tied by their expert florists, to give them a unique, personal, and artful look. Also, they deliver all Mother’s Day Flowers in a signature gift box, to tie the whole experience together.

4. Crown Finish Caves

Crown Finish caves interior

Crown Finish Caves, our favorite cheese affineur located right where our office is in Crown Heights, ages cheese in former beer caves. Besides the hilarious pandemic-themed gift box, “I Miss My Friends,” Crown Finish Caves is also offering a Mama Box with  1 lb. of Washed Bufarolo, a Pixie & Scout Cracker Pack, and a choice of limited supply vintage Rooftop Honey (4oz) OR Strawberry-Lemongrass jam (7.5oz) from Brin’s Jams.

5. Support Your Local Restaurant or Coffee Shop

Hunky Dory cocktail to go

Gift cards are an amazing way to support your local restaurant or coffee shop in this pandemic. Many places are turning up the creative factor too, transforming into wine shops, offering take out and delivery, transforming into gift shops, and more. For us in Crown Heights, we love what Hunky Dory is doing with to-go-cocktails and snack packs. Restauranteur Claire Sprouse is a cocktail expert and we’re definitely celebrating this weekend with some of her tasty craft creations.

We were also excited to see Cafe Cotton Bean, our favorite coffee shop reopen, which was originally funded on Kickstarter and has become a local favorite the nuances of Japanese culture to a classic Brooklyn coffee joint.

6. Gift Card to Untapped New York Tours

Untapped New York Insiders tour gift cards

We look forward to seeing everyone again when the city reopens safely. You can buy a gift card for your mom to our future tours and bring her to a tour of the secrets of Grand Central, the Remnants of the World’s Fairs, a tour and drink at a Prohibition speakeasy and more!


7. Get the New Book Silent Cities

Silent Cities Book Cover cropped

To travel through the cemeteries of New York is to travel through the hidden history of what some consider to be the greatest city in the world. Join writer Jessica Ferri on the launch of her book Silent Cities New York: Hidden Histories of the Region’s Cemeteries. The book covers not only the city’s greats — Green-Wood Cemetery, Woodlawn, and those on the Cemetery Belt in Brooklyn, but also those just outside like Sleepy Hollow Cemetery in Tarrytown, Kensico Cemetery in Valhalla, Ferncliff Cemetery in Hartsdale, and the Hartsdale Pet Cemetery.

Jessica Ferri is a freelance writer whose work has been published by The New Yorker’s Page Turner Blog, The Economist, NPR, Time Out New York, he Barnes and Noble Review, and The Daily Beast, where she is a regular contributor on books. Jessica has always harbored a passion for the macabre, whether it be horror movies, cemeteries, true crime, haunted histories, Charles Addams, the list goes on. She launched Silent Cities (silent_._cities) as a travelogue through Instagram, where she chronicled the incredible cemeteries she’d visit along with their unique and largely forgotten stories. The project immediately garnered the interest of a niche but very dedicated community of people who are fascinated by cemeteries and the secrets they hold.

You can also join Jessica on a virtual talk hosted for our members on May 13th to celebrate the launch of her new book!