NYC Life: Boathouse, Old City Hall, Black History Celebration, and Much More

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Great news! The Central Park Loeb Boathouse is reopening this summer. And speaking of Central Park, our roving photographer was at the Central Park Carousel. Another iconic NYC landmark is the Old City Hall Subway Station and you can tour it this spring. There’s a wonderful Black History event paying homage to the Black trailblazers on Broadway. Head to Fashion Avenue at 39th and check out the giant button.  Valerie Smaldone has the scoop on an interactive Alice in Wonderland Journey. Our Broadway Babe pays tribute to Burt Bacharach today. And get the latest updates on our Renewal Summit!

Check out the latest lineup of speakers at this year’s Renewal Summit. Our theme is “If Not Now, When?” so don’t wait ‘til when. GET THE DETAILS.


Central Park Boathouse is Resuscitated

Photo by Ajay Suresh via Wikimedia Commons

It was sad news when the iconic Loeb Boathouse closed last summer. So it was great news that it reopen this summer under new management. The boathouse has been there since the 1873 and restaurant opened in 1954.

The original Boathouse was constructed by one of the park’s landscape architects, Calvert Vaux who embarked on the project at a cost of   $2,360. The result was the Gothic-detailed timber complex on the south shore of Bethesda Terrace, with the front façade facing the lake.  By the early 1950s, the structure was in a state of disrepair, and a generous donation of $305,000 by investment banker and philanthropist Carl M. Loeb enabled the building of a new boat house, with the contribution of a further $110,000 from Parks. The new one was constructed on the east-end of the lake and was named in honor of the Loeb family.

It’s been the site of many movies and TV shows over the years, such as When Harry Met Sally, The Odd Couple, 27 Dresses,  and Sex in the City to name but a few. Read more about the reopening here.

Roving at the Central Park Carousel

Our roving photographer, Nicole Freezer Rubens, shares the history of photos of this iconic gem.  She writes:

The Central Park Carousel is a vintage, intricately detailed carved wooden gem, housed inside a plain brick structure. Peek inside and find a big, colorful surprise.

This is the fourth carousel on this site since 1871. The current ride was designed by Solomon Stein and Harry Goldstein in 1908 and is designated a scenic landmark. It is one of the largest merry-go-rounds in the United States, with 57 horses and 2 grand chariots. 250,000 people ride it each year while galloping along to organ music.

Whether you hop on for a spin or simply watch from the sidelines, this carousel is beautiful, quite special and worth revisiting at any age.

Nicole Freezer Rubens is the author of “The Long Pause and the Short Breath.” Follow her on Instagram@nfrconsult

Colorful Fun in Midtown

Valerie Smaldone has the scoop on another interactive art exhibit has opened in Manhattan-this time in the heart of midtown. For a wild and fun immersive artistic experience, take a trip to 5th and 44th Street for Wonderland Dreams by Alexa Meade. It is an Alice in Wonderland journey through painted rooms, minuscule doorways, tea party set-ups, and 3-d glasses with which to view colorful cascades of paper swirls. GET THE DETAILS.

Tours Resume of Old City Hall Subway Station

Photo by Marc A. Hermann, MTA NYC Transist

In 1904, New York City’s very first subway ride left from the City Hall station, and starting in March, the New York Transit Museum is offering in-person tours where you can explore the elegant chandeliers, leaded skylights, vaulted tile ceiling, and graceful curves of this decommissioned subway station.

The tour begins above ground with the fascinating history of Alfred Beach’s Pneumatic Tube and the development of City Hall and the subway system. Then head underground to explore the station designed by renowned architects George Heins & Christopher LaFarge, with innovative vaulted tile ceilings by master artisan Rafael Guastavino. Tours last approximately 90 minutes.

Though its track is still active as a turnaround for the 6 line, trains no longer stop at Old City Hall station. New York Transit Museum members have the unique opportunity to explore this New York landmark through exclusive guided tours.

Tickets available to purchase in March 2023 and cost $50.00. GET THE DETAILS.

An Homage to Black Trailblazers of Theater and Performance

Head to the Marble Community Church on W. 29th Street, for a very special event that pays tribute to Black trailblazers who have opened doors for multiple generations of Black talent. Special guests include Natasha Yvette Williams (Some Like It Hot), Q. Smith (Come From Away), Will Mann (National Touring Cast of Hadestown), and Eric Lockley (The Inheritance). Sunday Feb. 19th at 12:15 PM.

American Musical Theater owes a debt to actors, composers, and playwrights of the Black diaspora who have influenced its style and aesthetic at every stage of its evolution. Yet, Black performers were not given serious opportunities on America’s premier stage until 1917, though many of them were well-known across the country.

Then on Sunday, February 26, the Marble Community Gospel Choir will perform “classic Negro Spirituals to high-energy, feel-good anthems,” according to Rev. Rashad McPherson.

The Sanctuary was built in 1854 and is part of the oldest Protestant organization in North America with continuous service organized in 1628.


Giant Button Art Installation

6SqFt reports that the Garment District Alliance  unveiled the new Big Button sculpture on the corner of Fashion Avenue and 39th Street. Designed by Local Projects and UAP Company, the sculpture measures 28 feet tall and has a 15-foot diameter aluminum button with a bright yellow automotive finish and a 32-foot brushed stainless steel needle, honoring the neighborhood’s rich history in the world of fashion.  GET THE DETAILS.

Broadway Babe: Bacharach, Diamond, Burnett, Merman & Hamlisch

Our Broadway Babe, Randie Levine-Miller is at it again… Excavating some great entertainment finds which are on YouTube —A great concert in memory of Burt Bacharach; Neil Diamond’s greatest hits; a Carol Burnett, show reunion; and Ethel Merman and Marvin Hamlisch performing together at Sardis. GET THE DETAILS.



  • Cheryl Benton

    The tomato behind The Three Tomatoes. Cheryl Benton, aka the “head tomato” is founder and publisher of The Three Tomatoes, a digital lifestyle magazine for “women who aren’t kids”. Having lived and worked for many years in New York City, the land of size zero twenty-somethings, she was truly starting to feel like an invisible woman. She created The Three Tomatoes just for the fun of it as the antidote for invisibility and sent it to 60 friends. Today she has thousands of friends and is chief cheerleader for smart, savvy women who want to live their lives fully at every age and every stage. She is the author of the novel, "Can You See Us Now?" and co-author of a humorous books of quips, "Martini Wisdom." Because she's lived a long time, her full bio won't fit here. If you want the "blah, blah, blah", read more.

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