Destination Museum of American Finance - Friday Feb 26, 2016

IMG_1031  Sc0007364a_2_2Short notice I know...A Guide Named Sue is headed to a lecture at the Museum of American Finance this Friday. 

For Sue, the journey IS the tour. This time, we'll meet at Grand Central Terminal. After a short look around, we'll subway to SOHO. The walk will add many steps to your fitbit.

We will wander through SOHO, Little Italy, Chinatown, the Brooklyn Bridge area and Wall Street en route to our destination. Highlights will include short stops at the Hall of Records exhibit about LOMEX, CityStore, and the great exhibit about Harlem at Federal Hall.

We will be near but beyond the downtown Double Decker Bus route.

For registration at AnyGuide.Com click here.


Public Central Park/Fifth Ave Tour Sunday Feb 28, 2016

Sue 84A Guide Named Sue is heading to the Museum of the City of New York for a last view of The Great Race Exhibit (it's actually on until mid March) and a showing of Run for Your Life, the Fred Lebow documentary that was cancelled during the blizzard. Details about the destination are here. I am skipping the Yoga class. Sign up or head to your next event at the end of the tour.

You can join me near Apple at 1:00 PM.  The walk will add over 2 miles of steps to your fit bits. We will explore Central Park in and around the Marathon course and the Uptown Double Decker (HoHo) route. We'll peek into museum gift shops and small businesses on Madison. The tour ends at Museum of the City of New York near El Museo del Barrio and the Conservatory Gardens. Hard core walkers can continue on the Marathon course to 125th Street. Sign up for the tour by Friday at AnyGuide.com.

Lot's of Marathon posts on this blog. Here are last year's:  Last Fall  2015    and 2015 Marathon Expo.  

June 21, 2015 - Make Music New York and the pianos...

Yes it is Father's Day and Yes it is supposed to rain but...I could never really experience Make Music NY from the top of a HOHO bus and I haven't been to Sunday Smorgasburg at Brooklyn Bridge Park  and it is the last day that the pianos will be on the street this year so....

A Guide Named Sue is leading a tourist guide's daze off journey. Start - music at Ladies Pavillion at 10:00 AM. End - Smorgasburg Brooklyn Bridge Park somewhere in the afternoon.

The route is a work in progress. You can find music and piano locations via the links. Feel free to share possibe stops in comments. Let me know if you want to come along. (Pictures after the event!)


May 15 and 16 2015 Drifting in Daylight National Academy Jewish Museum

IMG_0049 IMG_1811Last Friday I headed to and through the North End of Central Park to see the Creative Time Exhibition Drifting in Daylight in preparation for my North End Tour Next week. One piece looks like the Chicago Bean but this one enables you to send post cards to people who are no longer here.


IMG_1813It was fun to find the people overdressed from the Woody IMG_1812Allen movie in the Conservatory Garden and far too many people found the ice cream station.

IMG_1815The Dana Discovery Center has an exhibit about the Park's water that was also worth a detour.

My actual destination was a visit with my favorite 100 (and 2 month) old friend Marie Runyon.

IMG_1817She is still looking great!

IMG_1818On Saturday, after  synagogue, I visited the National Academy Museum for their student exhibition (this week only - lots of fun) . Then, on to the Jewish Museum for a nostalgic look at the relationship between Modern Art and Early television. 

Finally, I saw Forever - fabulous one woman show (not the Pete Hamill Story I love so much) at The New York Theater Workshop - a great off-Broadway house.

#AMNH - Butterflies are gone for now but...

I thought I'd share this with a larger universe...
Sc0006a433So my great-niece R loves butterflies. She got up close and personal with them on a trip to the American Museum of Natural History a few months ago. Yesterday, I told her mother, my niece , my favorite NY Times  Metropolitan Diary story about a butterfly from the exhibit that went on a field trip. I used to tell the story when stuck in traffic on double decker buses near the museum. My niece asked me to find the original story and I did. It is from a gentler time before 9/11 . The postcard is from even longer ago.

Dear Diary:

The Museum of Natural History stocks a range of souvenirs for its exhibit of live tropical butterflies, but airborne samples are not among them. In that spirit, as we left the Butterfly Conservatory one recent evening, my friend Liza and I checked our clothes for hitchhikers. It was thus a surprise to discover after arriving home, a block away, an elegant mothlike creature flying room to room. What to do? The museum had closed for the night and the Costa Rican houseguest (Hamadryas februa, gender indeterminate, a k a gray cracker) was now our responsibility. There was no enticing it into the chilly New York air. In the end we lured it, via an empty Chinese food tray laced with New Zealand honey and Vermont syrup, into a bathroom steamed up to near-sauna temperature. Morning found the stowaway happily asleep, wings spread on the damp wall.

And so, the three of us marched down Central Park West to the conservatory. The curators said it was the first time an escapee had returned. The gray cracker, meanwhile, wasted little time rejoining friends — no doubt regaling them with tales of a wider world with sunlight, skyscrapers and not enough flowers.

D. G. Feuchtwanger

#The_Ride takes A Guide Named Sue

Bus woman's holiday. I was still working on Double Decker buses when The Ride began. I thought it was a ridiculous waste of sightseeing time until Thursday June 14 at 4PM when I actually took The Ride. IMG_1006

The Ride looks at Times Square and midtown as theatrical entertainment.  The guide hosts engage with passengers and onlookers. They even made it fun for a local (tour guide no less). The bus is air conditioned and comfortable. Street and sky views are framed by the bus skeleton.

While I love sharing midtown early in the morning before the crowds arrive, The Ride provides the opportunity to step back for a bit and see the hustle and bustle of Times Square without being overwhelmed by it.

There is a nice bit of history and statistics mixed in to the patter as well. Another tour I experienced which will remain nameless, catered to people's preconceived notions of NYC. The Ride enables passengers to see what is here now and also uses some great videos.

Best of all, I learned something. For some reason, I always thought the Empire Theater was moved East to make room for the skyscraper I watched being built on the SE corner of 42nd and Eighth Avenue. The building was actually moved West 170 feet or so.

Yes, A Guide Named Sue is a fan. If/when you take the ride and you see a tour guide waving at you, it just might well be me.

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5 Pointz Whitewash April - June 8, 2014

In case you miss or missed 5 Pointz, I attended the opening of an exhibit of works by people who painted at 5 Pointz and photographed the scene called WHITEWASH.  The exhibit is at the Jeffrey Leder Gallery near the Court Square stop on the 7 and near the wonderful Court Square diner. MOMA PS 1 is also not far away.

IMG_0879Hans Von Rittern my tourguide photographer friend is one of the exhibitors.  If you are staying in Long Island City or visiting stop in. Great works of great artists.



Dec 14, 2013...good Indian food - caroling with a view and...

my favorite holiday movie Miracle on 34th Street at my second favorite area movie palace - Loews Jersey.

IMG_0572(This skyline view was actually taken from Newark Airport but it does remind me of a picture in the current Magritte exhibit at MOMA. Do you know what's missing?)

Dining possibilities and directions are listed here.

A Guide Named Sue is going. Are you? Let's meet up for the journey or at the theater.

Open House New York - Oct 12,13 2013 - Masonic Lodge

For my 11th year as a volunteer for Open House New York, I will be stationed at the Masonic Lodge from 10:30 until 2:30 on Sat Oct 12. I had an extensive tour of the premises with the Guides Association of New York (a great site to find me and other private licensed NYC tour guides) a few years ago and it is truly a hidden gem close to Madison Square. I never visited during Open House New York because the I either wasn't in the neighborhood or the lines were too long. You will either find me doing crowd control for the lines or doing the raffle pitch by the donation box at the end of the tour. OHNY needs money to keep the weekend free and open to all.

In recent years, the Masons have become a less secretive organization. They now want people to know about their history and philanthropic efforts.  If you are planning to be in the neighborhood, you might be able to take a tour at another time.

The Open House New York program will be on-line at the OHNY website on Oct 2nd and in print in next week's issue of Timeout New York.  For some ideas of places that may be on the list this year, have a look at this post from last year.  OHNY 2012 review  More when the full weekend program is on-line.


Society of Illustrators Fall 2013

For those of you who are searching for a hidden gem in NYC, the Society of Illustrators is certainly one of them. In August, after some of us at the Guides Association of New York did fam tours of The Asia Society and The Roosevelt House at Hunter College,  I suggested that we stop in at the Society of Illustrators . Unfortunately, it was late and the Society would be closing soon. So, someone suggested that I arrange a fam trip there.

IMG_0622So, after a few phone calls and emails and help from the education chairwoman Nina Mende, the Guides had a fam tour of the current exhibits with the Collection Manager Eric Fowler. It was great fun learning about the artists behind the advertisements and illustrations and about the building and the Society.

A few of us stayed and paid full price ($30.00 plus tax and tip) for the Museum Experience dining option in the hall of fame room. The lunch cost is in addition to the very reasonable entrance fee but it is well worth it! If any of you are interested in drawing, you might want to visit the Society for sketch nights which are open to the public.

On October 23rd, an exhibit of original art for children's books will open. This should be paired with the exhibit at the Public Library about Why Children's Books Matter.

If you have children with you take a tour of the Metropolitan Museum of Art with me and you will find the illustrations of Met Children's books on the walls.