True story: I once began a conversation with, “Kelly told me today,” and I was speaking of Kelly Ripa from her morning dialogue that day on Live With Regis and Kelly. For real. Celebrities have become such a part of our days – making the news most nights, greeting us in every checkout aisle, selling us toothpaste and tires on commercials on t.v. – that they sometimes seem to be an actual part of our lives. If like me you kind of half way enjoy this, then you’re going to love the Central Park Audio Tour.
If you’ve never been to the park, you may not realize how many famous sites are located within it. Central Park is much more than the open grassy space beneath the skyscrapers that you’ve seen so much. And many scenes you’ve witness in the movies could be from Central Park, and you don’t even know it. New York City student tours are the perfect chance to get to know this famous park, and the audio tour is a fun and informative way to do it.
So how does it work? There’s a number to dial – 646-862-0997 – and throughout the park you’ll find signs near all the favorite hangouts within it. The sign will have two more digits on it. When you call the number above and input the digits on the sign, you’ll soon hear a famous and familiar voice describing where you stand, from its history to interesting trivia and even the personal touches that sometimes matter the most.
I think what I love most about the idea is that I could listen to the audio from anywhere at any time. So before I go to NYC myself and visit the park, I could look at a map, dial the numbers, and then enter the park armed with all sorts of understanding about the amazing sites within it. You can visit the website for the Central Park Conservancy to view photos of the park, maps, and a list of the corresponding digits for all the attractions as well as the celebrities who describe them. Here is just a glimpse to get you started.
Alice in Wonderland – This famous Central Park statue of the favorite heroine and her friends, including the Mad Hatter, is described by Whoopi Goldberg.
Carousel and Children’s Glade – Call the numbers for these Central Park attractions, and you’ll be able to begin a sentence with “Kelly Ripa told me” too.
Bow Bridge is one of the prettiest, most familiar bridges in a park that’s full of them. Julia Louis-Dreyfus describes it on your audio tour.
The Mall – Dial 22 for this famous Central Park scene and listen to Jerry Seinfeld describe the beautiful Elms and why the first section is known as the literary walk. You’ll probably even chuckle when he points out famous unknowns along that walkway and the fact that although still as popular, The Mall is hardly a place for residents’ “Sunday best” as it used to be.
The Pond – Central Park’s ponds are every bit as famous as its bridges and walkways. And this one is described by one of New York City’s favorite famous residents, Sarah Jessica Parker.
And the list goes on and on! I’ve tried it for myself, and it really is neat to hear a familiar voice guide you through these beloved New York City locations. Try it from home for a little taste of Central Park from absolutely anywhere. Or better yet, make New York City your next group travel destination, and let the celebrities guide you while you’re actually there.
Photo by wallyg on Flickr.