Do Not Just Vacation: Live Like a New Yorker

By Jennifer Flores on September 8, 2016

Coney Island

Although I’m super pumped to be back on campus, I cannot help but reminisce about my summer at home. Now a sophomore, I have realized the culture shock of transitioning from New York City to Gettysburg College will probably hit me every time. My concrete jungle is replaced with a botanical garden where people hold doors for you and smile as you pass them. It takes a special kind of person to not only survive New York City, but be called a true New Yorker. This honor cannot be bestowed upon just anyone (your Times Square day trip to see the Lion King on Broadway does not count). Luckily for you, in my moment of reflection, I decided to create a mini guide to help you take on New York like a true New Yorker (or at least how to not look like a tourist).

The Apollo Theater

Broadway is nice, so is the Apollo at Harlem.

This is probably my top and most basic advice: visit all of the tourist attractions because they are worth it, however, do not limit yourself to them. The Apollo theater is filled with so much history and culture. The shows are amazing and although Harlem is not what it used to be during the Harlem Renaissance, it is still worth checking out. If you are a big jazz fan or just want to watch a show at a premier location, go to Dizzy’s Club Coca Cola. I spent my whole summer working there and was spoiled with amazing views of Central Park West and Columbus Circle.


Soho, Noho

If you are a big fashion nerd like I am, go to Soho and bring binoculars. Expect to stumble into a street photoshoot and/or spot a celebrity shopping. My favorite place to eat in Soho is MacBar because, not only is the restaurant shaped like giant macaroni, it is one of the few affordable places in Soho and the food is tasty and unique. Anywhere in New York City you are bound to run into a cool adventure you probably were not looking for. During the summer, my friend and I randomly got to hang out at a 70 Million dollar apartment in Soho because we knew the doorman. For those of you that do not know: Soho stands for South Houston and Noho is North Houston. Check out Bowery Park as well and find the Sea World attraction! It is a Sea World-inspired carousel and I seriously felt like the little mermaid there.


Williamsburg or Hipsterville, Brooklyn

Williamsburg is a very up and coming area in Brooklyn filled with amazing street art, unique thrift shops, and hipsters everywhere. This area is definitely less hustle and bustle than the previous areas mentioned. However, between the Brooklyn Flea Market and Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival, it is still lively and exciting. If you want a one of a kind anything, come to Brooklyn first. I guarantee you will find it here or I will personally buy you a cup of coffee.

Lower West Side

The rest is for you to explore. Live like a New Yorker, minus the bad attitude and stress from delayed trains (we make it look so easy). Do not pay more than a dollar something for your pizza (2 Bros Pizza is available at most corners in NYC), support small businesses and get your cup of coffee at a bodega instead of Starbucks, and do not hesitate to give the homeless some change. A New Yorker is hungry, curious, and fearless. May your minds open wider and your eyes see further next time you stop by the city that never sleeps. Welcome to NYC.

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