Tuesday, May 26, 2009

No Place to Go? In New York?!!!

Some things never seem to change. A post on Bad4Shidduchim included some comments asking about where to take a girl on a date. I may have problems with New York for other reasons, but I've never complained that there isn't enough to do here, particularly when on a date. And yet, somehow, we continue to hear about the coke in the hotel lobby dates, date after date after date. If dating boredom is attacking you, or if you are just plain looking for places to go and things to do, I offer the following advice.

Head for http://nyc.gov/portal/site/nycgov/menuitem.e2a1b26d9be35ff6a62fa24601c789a0/

This takes you to the visitors page of the NYC website. Scroll down the menu and you'll find plenty to keep you busy and entertained for any date you may be considering. Just a few samples:
Lower Eastside Jewish Conservancy
Experience America's most famous immigrant neighborhood from inside its landmarked sacred synagogues through customized private walking/noshing tours.
Lower East Side Tenement Museum
Understand the experience of immigrants in early New York City through a tour of old housing.
Lower East Side Walking Tours
Visit LowerEastSideTours.org to learn about tours of neighborhoods in the City's historic Lower East Side including the East Village, Alphabet City, Astor Place, The Bowery, Little Italy, Chinatown, the City Hall area, and more.

Lefferts Homestead Children's Museum
Lefferts Homestead in Prospect Park is one of the few surviving Dutch Colonial farmhouses in Brooklyn. Built for a prominent 18th-century Flatbush landowner, it was home to at least four generations of the Lefferts family.
The Old Stone House
The Old Stone House, located near Park Slope/Gowanus in J.J. Byrne Park, is now an Historic Interpretive Center.
Pieter Claesen Wyckoff House Museum
The oldest home in New York City evokes Dutch colonial home life in the 17th and 18th centuries.


King Manor
King Manor is the centerpiece of an 11-acre historic park in Jamaica, Queens. The 18th- and 19th-century house takes its name from Rufus King, a signer of the United States Constitution.
Kingsland Homestead
Kingsland Homestead, a late 18th-century house in Flushing, stands in the shade of the Weeping Beech tree, a designated City landmark planted in 1847.
Queens County Farm Museum
A working farm surrounds the museum located in the restored Jacob Andriance Farmhouse.


Bartow-Pell Mansion Museum
Visit the last of the many grand mansions that once stood in Pelham Bay. The home and its grounds have been carefully decorated and maintained to evoke their original 19th century elegance.
Edgar Allen Poe Cottage
The tine Poe cottage in the Bronx was the last home of Edgar Allen Poe, the great American writer.
Valentine-Varian House
The Valentine-Varian House was built in 1758, when carriages traveled the nearby Boston Post Road through a Bronx that was still mostly farmland.
Van Cortlandt House
This house museum, preserving the 18th century Georgian home, has been open since 1897.

Staten Island:

Alice Austen House
The Victorian, cottage-style home of photographer Alice Austen on Staten Island is now a museum dedicated to her photographs of turn-of-the-century American life.
Conference House
The Conference House, a 17th century stone manor, sits on 226 acres across Raritan Bay from Perth Amboy, New Jersey. It's name comes from the peace negotiations that took place there between the British and Americans in 1776.
Historic Richmond Town
Richmond Town in La Tourette Park is a living history village and museum that portrays the history and culture of Staten Island.
Seguine Mansion
Located on the southern shore facing Prince's Bay, the Seguine Mansion represents the classical architecture and thriving commerce of 19th century Staten Island.

Or head for this link: http://www.nyc.gov/html/dcla/html/find/find.shtml to find any of the following around the city.
Botanic Gardens
Film/Video Art
Folk Art
Historic Houses
Visual Arts

Also very helpful: http://www.frommers.com/destinations/newyorkcity/ Info about New York City online. There's also a book version "Frommer's New York City 2009," also a handy guide to have around.

Or head to http://hubpages.com/hub/20_Fun_First_Date_Ideas_New_York_City
Or http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/59349/the_top_date_places_in_new_york_city.html?cat=8

Absolutely no reason on earth why dating has to be a boring time.

And then there was the enterprising young man who loved to fish. He took a date on one of those boats that take you out fishing in the ocean. He packed a picnic lunch and they spent a lovely day on the water. Didn't hurt that they both came home with "dinner" for their families. Lots of great conversation possible when it's just you and the ocean while waiting for a fish to nibble.

Hotel lobbies and cokes? Borrrrrrring!


Rita said...

Hope it's ok with you but I'm making some copies of this posting to give to members of our local shidduch group. We're always being asked where to go on a date. This makes it simpler to answer.

Trudy said...

Some great resources for families here. I never liked going the amusement park route when we were taking the kids someplace.

Only one problem that I can see with your suggestions. A whole lot of them are going to require more then the maximum two hours that some idiots have decided is the limit for a date. I think my first date with my hubby was around 10 hours. We were having a great time so we continued on having that great time. And what was a lunch date ended up being a lunch and dinner date. So what? Whatever happened to spontaneity in dating? All told I think we dated around 100+ hours worth before we got engaged. At least I wasn't going down to the chupah to what was a virtual stranger.

Michael said...

Thanks! I'm not from NY but living here now and I really don't know much about the city. This helps, and my future dates thank you too,.

harry-er than them all said...

All these suggestions are good and fine- for the summer and during the day. the trick is to find something at night that isn't a lobby, restaurant, or espn-like. as most yeshiva guys or that are in college, go out at night, it gets a little trickier. so if you have any suggestions for that criteria, on behalf of all of us suggest away

Anonymous said...

Umm, how about using Mikomos? It's actually quite useful and filled with good suggestions.


ProfK said...

Many of the places listed in the information I posted have at least one late night opening during the week. This is where you have to do some work by going to the place you have possibly picked out and finding the hours of operation.

If you are only going out during the week at night you are seriously limiting where you can take a girl, I guess the reason why mikomos lists so many hotels in their places to go. The mikomos.com is a good place but it is not as comprehensive in the places it lists as the sites in the posting, and as I said, it is top heavy with hotels and lounges and restaurants.

Here's an idea--try dating on a Sunday. Less pressure to run from work/college/yeshiva to get dressed and out for both the boy and the girl). And yes, it allows for more time to be spent on a date. Just what moral law would be broken if a couple took 4 hours to tour the Bronx Zoo or the Met or Richmondtown? Or spent the afternoon playing golf, miniature or otherwise? To see all the exhibits and demonstrations instead of racing through like a train late for its next stop?

And monetarily, dating during the day makes sense as well. Most of the kosher restaurants charge less for their lunch type dishes than they do for their evening/dinner dishes.

Moshe said...

Sort of on the topic and I can't think of anyone else to ask who might give me a straight answer. I just arrived this term at Touro in Brooklyn. I'm guessing that's where you teach from some of the comments you've made.

Why doesn't the school want the boys in it to meet and date the girls in it? My parents thought this would be perfect but it's not. I'm in school M & W nights. The girls have T & Th. nights, so those nights are out for dating. Friday night is Shabbos and Shabbos night gets out too late now for dating. Sunday morning and afternoon the girls have school and Sunday afternoon and evening there are classes for the boys.

Was this done on purpose or am I just seeing that way? Any suggestions?

G6 said...

A friend of mine, just this past Friday night was expounding on how much FUN they had when (30+ yrs. ago) he dated his wife, on a half-a-shoestring budget.
How creative is this? (though I don't know if you could do it today): They went to NIGHT COURT!!! He said it was the best date they ever had. (of course the nature of the crimes being tried at night court today might be a bit more on the "seedy" side...... ;) )

harry-er than them all said...

i actually try to date on sundays, as its cheaper, easier, and more places to go. (personal favorite- botanical gardens) however sometimes you can't, and are forced to go at night. and i know how much guys and girls love lounges (they dont).

oh and winter dating is also really hard. summer is easy

what girls don't seem to get is that if you are only available in the evenings, there is a lack of variety.

mikomos is good, if all you want is a restaurant and lounge listing. personally reading time-out NY, NY times, and doing my own research (like scouting the place beforehand) has yielded me the best places. once tried, i post to mikomos.

Anonymous said...

Do they still have Shakespeare in the Park?


G6 said...

Even more fun is Shakespeare on the Run!

ProfK said...

If you are restricted to a midweek evening then your choices are more limited but still there. What is there and useful will depend on what you find acceptable. There are all kinds of theatre productions around the city, not just on Broadway but at some of the little theatres and at the college and university theatres. The city abounds with evening lectures of every description; again, colleges and universities are a good source. There are indoor sports venues. There's a place in downtown Manhattan that provided board games for the cost of a drink--have to check if it's still there.

Heck, if need be grab some sandwiches from a deli and ride the Staten Island Ferry back and forth a few times--the view of the Statue of Liberty at night is great, as is the skyline view of Manhattan.

Just a suggestion though. If you find you have to do a lounge date one time, don't repeat it the next date. Even a drink at a Barnes and Nobles has to be better than two lounge dates in a row.

ProfK said...

The history of Touro in Brooklyn, particularly the LAS mens and womens division is an interesting one. When the heads of the Brooklyn yeshivas heard that Touro was coming to Brooklyn, you can't imagine what names the College was called--none of them repeatable here. On the first day of classes instructors had to cross angry picket lines of protestors who wanted Touro to leave.

An accomodation was made with the Roshei Hayeshiva that included promising that in no way, shape or form would men and women be allowed in the building together at the same time for any reason--that included the library, computer facilities and even going to the business or registrar's office. The schedule you refer to is the result of keeping the sexes segregated. As you point out, it also plays havoc with a Touro boy's trying to date a Touro girl when they are both in school, although that intention was never stated.

Not all that many courses given on a Sunday night for the men. You might consider taking only a weekday schedule if possible, leaving you Sunday afternoons and evening if you really want to date a Touro girl.

Anonymous said...

G6 - Even more fun is Shakespeare on the Run![]

Wow! I've been away from NYC for so long, I never even heard of it. Sounds like lots of fun. Good for a more active kind of date.

By the way, I read a year and a half of your blog today and left a few comments. Great blog, it's now on my list.


Anonymous said...

ProfK - and ride the Staten Island Ferry back and forth a few times[]

I did this once ... alone ... because I fell asleep :-)


G6 said...

Mark -
I read your comments.
They were very enjoyable and nostalgic.
I'm glad you're planning on becoming a regular reader.

Scraps said...

I've been to several Shakespeare on the Run productions with friends, and they're a lot of fun! I also once went to Shakespeare in the Parking Lot, which was much more bare-bones but still true to the text of the play. There's also free Shakespeare in Inwood Hill Park, for the Washington Heights crowd.

There is far more to do on a summer's evening (especially cool free stuff!) than in the winter. Also, the Staten Island ferry is best done in good weather, because once a guy took me in the rain and it was NOT pleasant.

ProfK_Offspring said...

Actually, if your prospective date is from Staten Island, then avoid the ferry--for us it's a mode of transport whose views have lost their charm a long time ago. Back in my yeshiva days, the entire school got taken on the ferry as our mid-term "treat" excursion. The Staten Islanders were irked no end.