Use of New York City subway; extensive stairs. Walking up to 5 miles; city streets.
In the hotel meeting room, we’ll have bagels, muffins, bananas, hard-boiled eggs, cold cereals, cream cheese, jelly, butter, plus milk (regular/low-fat), orange juice, coffee/decaf, tea, water.
We’ll be joined by a local historian who will give us an illustrated lecture on the history of Christmas and holiday celebrations in New York City. You may be surprised to learn how many traditions originated here in NYC. The best way to soak up the Christmas spirit in our city is by walking. We'll take a short stroll to the main branch of the New York Public Library. The building is one of the great public places in NYC and is stunningly decorated for the holidays and the iconic lions, Patience & Fortitude, usually sport enormous wreaths. We'll have some time on our own to explore the interior of the gorgeous building dating from 1911. Directly behind the library is the largest of the city's wonderful Holiday Markets. You may want to return when you have free time later in the week.
One of the most requested luncheon items in New York is pizza. We'll stop for lunch at a popular neighborhood pizza restaurant; soft drinks and water included, other beverages available for purchase.
Next, we’ll walk across the street to the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine. It vies with Liverpool’s Anglican cathedral for the title of the largest Anglican cathedral and fourth-largest Christian church in the world. The cornerstone was laid in 1892... and it's not even finished! In addition to its purpose as a house of worship, St. John is an arts, cultural, and civic center and a renowned “feat of human engineering.” One of the Cathedral's educators will help us understand the history, features, and symbolism of this unique architectural treasure.
At a local restaurant, we’ll have a plated meal with coffee, tea, water included; other beverages available for purchase.
Performance. We’ll take the subway to the charming neighborhood of Greenwich Village and attend a performance of “A Christmas Carol” at the Merchant’s House Museum. Charles Dickens himself was in New York during December 1867 for performances of his beloved holiday classic. Amid authentic 19th-century period furnishings and holiday decorations, we’ll celebrate the season with a captivating performance created from Dickens’ own script.