New York City Sightseeing is Slowly Returning With Creative Tours

Where Traveler, October 15, 2020

by Noah Diamond

Turnstile Tours, a Brooklyn-based company, normally offers custom-made walking tours of locations like the Brooklyn Navy Yard and the Essex Market, in partnership with local businesses and organizations. Today, the same ethos of community and access which animates Turnstile’s walking tours is available through its Virtual Programs.

Offered via Zoom webinar, the Virtual Programs are described as “online experiences…talking with makers, street vendors, and museum staff, showing artifacts and materials from our archives, and sharing stories and research that don’t always make it into our tours.” In one memorable program from early in the pandemic, tour guide Brian Hoffman spoke remotely with a woman buying a pint of lychee at the Original Chinatown Ice Cream Factory.

A selection of Turnstile’s Virtual Programs is available for free at the company’s website; new programs, generally, three or four per week, are e-ticketed events. And the company has now resumed in-person walking tours of Prospect Park, under precautions like limited group size and mandatory masks.

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The Marx Brothers in NYC with Noah Diamond | Episode 114

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Noah Diamond is a man of many hats, including a Groucho Marx painted mustache and cigar. In addition to being a New York City tour guide, writer, performer, and designer, he is also an expert on all things Marx Brothers. On this special program, he’ll walk us through the many connections Groucho, Chico, Harpo, and Zeppo have had with New York City. He’ll also chat with us about his work on reviving their very first (and somewhat forgotten) Broadway musical, “Marxfest” and other performances and events he has produced, and the campaign to landmark the boys’ childhood home.

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