Today we continue our preview of the upcoming Guides Association of New York City Awards Ceremony by looking at the nominees for “Outstanding NYC Website,” “Outstanding Achievement in Support of NYC Preservation,” and “Outstanding Achievement in Support of NYC Tourism.” The Awards Ceremony is on Monday, March 2. Check out my look into the world of NYC tour guides and predictions on other award nominees.
4. Outstanding NYC Website
Perhaps I’m biased, but I would add Untapped Cities to the list of nominees, and hope that it’s nominated next time. In any case, these are four great sites, and I’ve spent some time on all of them. Gothamist is a destination site for many young people. I often learn more in the comment section than from the articles. Forgotten NY gets props for its focus on Queens, which many NYC historians don’t devote much time to. Scouting NY has a great niche in scouting out and reporting on movie shoot locations around the city. If you’re frustrated with the luxury tower direction of the city, you’re probably acquainted with the work of Jeremiah Moss. He has been a relentless critic of the new New York, and a promoter of the old. I’m not sure his work is more useful to guides than the other nominees here, but I bet he’ll get the shout out on Monday.
JANOS.NYC PICK: Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York
5. Outstanding Achievement in Support of NYC (preservation)
Andrew Berman, Executive Director, Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation
Andrew Scott Dolkart, Professor of Historic Preservation & Director of the Historic Preservation Program at Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation
Peg Breen, President, The New York Landmarks Conservancy
Four entities that take on preservation from different angles. The Highline’s reinvention of a forgotten space has earned international recognition. I’m familiar with Andrew Berman’s activism in the East Village, where he demonstrates the value of having a smart hyper-local preservationist. But is there a group that’s done more comprehensive work in this area than the Landmarks Conservancy?
JANOS.PICK: Peg Breen
6, Outstanding Achievement in Support of NYC (tourism)
Justin Ferate, Urban, Social & Architectural Historian, NYC Tour Guide, Preservation Activist
Dan Biederman, Co-founder, Grand Central Partnership; Co-Founder & President, 34th Street Partnership; Co-Founder & President, Bryant Park Corporation
Billy Mitchell, Tour Director, The Apollo Theater
Emily K. Rafferty, President, The Metropolitan Museum of Art; Chairwoman, NYC & Company
This category is a little looser than the others, something of a catch-all for different people and groups that have generally made the city better to visit. Ferate is considered one of the best guides in New York City. Biederman pioneered a form public-private partnerships exemplified by Bryant Park. Few venues in New York have the iconic history of the Apollo. But Rafferty’s leadership at the only museum in this group gives her the edge. The Met’s steep “suggested” price strikes a great balance of asking wealthy tourists to properly support the museum while keeping it accessible for everyone.
JANOS.NYC PICK: Emily Rafferty