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New York, New York, It’s A Hell of a Town!

By Brett D. Lambert

“When reporters asked the Pope what he liked best about New York, he replied, ‘Tutti buoni’ – everything is good. That’s my philosophy exactly.” – Andy Warhol

In its simplest terms, New York City can be summed up with the Pope’s and Andy Warhol’s shared philosophy: tutti buoni. Why visit New York? Frankly, why not visit New York?

As one of the biggest cities on the planet, there’s certainly no shortage of things to see and do, from Manhattan’s beautiful skyline with the Flatiron Building, one of NYC’s first skyscrapers, to the Chrysler Building, the Rockefeller Center, and that gem of a building, the Empire State Building with its observation deck offering a breathtaking view of the city. Not to be missed is the Statue of Liberty, an enduring symbol of the American dream for countless immigrants who have carved out better lives for their families in the New World. There’s also the United Nations headquarters where representatives from nearly 200 nations finagle the global dream of world peace.

In the mood for a ballgame? No problem. You can catch Yankee and Mets baseball games at Yankee Stadium and Shea Stadium, respectively. And let’s not forget Madison Square Garden, home of the Knicks basketball team and the Rangers hockey team. There’s no shortage of sports entertainment from little league to the big leagues.

Want to leave the big city hustle for a little bit? Well, you don’t even have to leave the city. Head on over to Central Park where you can leave your troubles behind in an oasis of manicured grass and huge shaded trees. Perfect for a brisk walk, jog, dog walking, bike riding and other general leisure activities.

Want to experience some fine arts? You’ll find plenty. As the cultural centre of America, New York City is rich in museums, art galleries, and Broadway (and off-Broadway and off-off Broadway). There is something to fulfill all budgets and all tastes. The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art are just a small sampling of what the city has to offer culturally.

Want to do some shopping? Find some exceptional cuisine? You’ve just entered heaven. The shopping is second-to-none with such legendary stores like Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s. As for food, The Wall Street Journal puts it this way: “Manhattan is a narrow island off the coast of New Jersey devoted to the pursuit of lunch.” Just one of many examples of great eats is Mike’s Deli on Arthur Ave. in the Belmont section of the Bronx, with salamis and ripe cheeses hanging overhead, olives soaking in extra virgin olive oil, and the best smoked meat in town. Mmm. And did I mention the street vendors?

Not to be overlooked are the people. Here is a cosmopolitan blend of cultures from around the world. A common saying is that you could travel to many places of the world, but you haven’t seen the world until you’ve seen New York. Despite their reputation for toughness, New Yorkers have a soft spot for showing people around and making visitors feel at home. If you’re standing with a map, without fail, you’ll be asked where you’re going and given a personalized guided tour of the city. Wow!

So if you’re in New York state of mind, pack your bags and head to the city that never sleeps! One bite of the big Apple and you’ll be sure to come back for seconds…and thirds.

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