“Untapped New York Assisting Port Authority in Supplying Genetically Modified Ants to Dig New North River Rail Tunnel.” “Venerable West Side Hotel to be Renamed for its Architect: Emery Roth!.” “Justin River’s Latest Untapped New York Tour: Remnants of the Garment District!”

Courtesy of Robert Morbeck

As thrilling as these headlines sound, they’re fake. Every April 1st Untapped New York Insiders and our staff eagerly await the release of The Daily Planet Express, April Fools Edition. This spoof newspaper created by Untapped New York Insider Robert Morbeck spotlights notable experiences, inside jokes, and top news stories of the past year from the Untapped New York universe. Check out previous editions of the paper below!

Courtesy of Robert Morbeck

Morbeck has always had a love for April Fools’ Day. “When I was a kid my father used to always say, ‘There’s an elephant in the backyard!,'” he shared with Untapped New York. “I tried that with my kids and it didn’t work out as well. They’d run to the door and get very upset when there was no elephant!” He also gets a kick out of fake April Fools’ news stories, like when Taco Bell said they had purchased the Liberty Bell. “A lot of people used to do that, lots of college newspapers especially,” he said. This affinity for “typical April Fools’ shenanigans” inspired him to create his own fake paper.

The first edition of The Daily Planet Express came out in 2021 after Morbeck attended our Remnants of the World’s Fair walking tour led by Untapped New York’s Chief Experience Officer Justin Rivers and Artist-in-Residence Aaron Asis. Justin and Morbek bonded over a love of the show Futurama, which there are nods to in the newspaper, including the name. Morbeck earned the nickname, Morbo, which is an alien newscaster in the show.

Remnants of the World’s Fair Tour

NYS Pavilion

The first edition of the paper, which came out in 2021, had a story about Justin’s plans to roll Madison Square Garden to a new spot on top of the Port Authority Bus terminal. A rendering of this plan shows the Garden and World’s Fair landmarks like the Trylon and Perisphere and Unisphere perched atop the bus terminal. Insiders Robyn Roth-Moise, Marcy Davis, Peter Tannen got shout-outs in the piece.

Courtesy of Robert Morbeck

Untapped New York tour guide Mandy Edgecombe got the spotlight in 2022 with news of her becoming the Queen of New Amsterdam, ousting Peter Stuyvesant. Referencing our founder Michelle Young’s article about the pneumatic tube mail system and an episode of the Untapped New York Podcast, Morbeck writes of a new way to send your pets around town. Justin River’s refrigerator, which is often seen in the virtual talks he leads, also made headlines. By popular demand, Justin did actually give Insiders a tour of his fridge during one of our virtual talks!

Courtesy of Robert Morbeck

Morbeck almost didn’t make a newspaper this year, as his computer broke, but Insiders and the Untapped New York team are glad he pulled one together. Happy April Fools’ Day!

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