Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Pictures

tree top

Rockefeller Center Tree

The Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree lighting is just hours away and people are beginning to pack into Rockefeller Plaza.  Here are some before and after pictures of the tree in Rockefeller Center.

You can see all of the lights of Rockefeller Center, 5th Avenue, and more on the Holiday Lights bus tour, now running through the end of the year!

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Winter in NYC

It’s the hap- happiest season of all.  The holidays are here, snow has already fallen, lights are being strung up, and smiles can be found on faces across New York City.  Let’s take a quick look at the lineup in NYC for the next month and half:

  • 11/22/12: Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade
  • 11/28/12: Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting
  • 12/8/12: Hanukkah begins
  • 12/25/12: Christmas
  • 12/31/12: Times Square drops the ball on the New Year

In just over a month, NYC is home to 3 of the most watched annual events in the world, sandwiching two of the most exciting holidays of the year.  If every week it seems like something new is going to happen, it’s because every week something new is happening!

So in case you haven’t been following along on the blog, or you’re just looking for something to do while you’re in town, here are a few ideas:

Yes, it’s the most wonderful time of the year here in New York City.  Make sure that you take advantage of it.

Photo Credit: Flickr / Fly Navy

New Year’s Eve in Times Square NYC

New Years Eve in Times Square

New Years Eve in Times Square

Winter is the season when time flies by.  One day you’re preparing your signature dish for Thanksgiving dinner and next thing you know, you counting down from 10 as the ball drops in Times Square.

Don’t let New Year’s Eve sneak up on you this year.  If you want to celebrate the New Year in New York City, it’s time to start preparing now.  Let’s take a look at one of The Big Apple’s greatest traditions: watching the ball drop in Times Square on December 31st.

As the clock approaches 12 and the ball begins descending from atop One Times Square, the whole world stops to watch.  In fact, over one billion people worldwide watch the ball drop live on TV.  If you’re going to be in New York for New Year’s, you don’t want to watch the ball drop on TV; you want to see it in person!

  • New Year’s Eve in Times Square is a free event.  You don’t need to pay, you don’t need a ticket; you just have to get there early if you want a good spot.  And I mean really early, because one million other people will pack in to Times Square to see the ball drop live, too. The streets are closed down at 3 p.m. and by midnight the closest that you will get to the ball is Central Park.
  • December 31st is in the middle of the winter.  Since we’re still over a month away we don’t have a weather report yet, but winter nights in New York City typically get pretty cold.  If you’re going to be standing outside all night to watch the ball drop, you better dress warm.  Wear layers and bring hand warmers.  You’re going to need them.
  • Performances:  Taylor Swift is slated to perform live on New Year’s Rockin’ Eve from Times Square.  There is no word on when or how long she will perform.  More celebrity appearances are expected to be announced in the near future.

If you are coming to NYC but don’t want to fight the crowds on Times Square, you might want to try a New Year’s Eve Fireworks Cruise and ring in the new year from the water (with an open bar).

For more information on New Year’s Eve in Times Square, visit timessquarenyc.com

Photo Credit: Flickr/Lin Hsin Yao

Free Shuttle to Westfield Garden State Plaza on Black Friday

…And the next few weeks, for that matter.

Black Friday is a week away and the Westfield Garden State Plaza might just be the place to go.  The mall will be open at 7 a.m. next Friday and feature some of the best deals around.  What’s more, there will be giveaways to enter throughout the day for chances to win Broadway tickets, Samsung Galaxy products, AMC Movie tickets, and more!

The best part is, if you’re staying in New York City for the holiday, you can get to Westfield for free!  Come to the Gray Line New York visitor’s center at 777 8th Avenue and we’ll give you a free ticket for the shuttle that runs from Times Square to the Westfield Garden State Plaza.  No purchase necessary.  You can also get a ticket in the CitySights NY visitor’s Center in the lobby of Madame Tussauds, Times Square.

The shuttle runs to and from the mall three times a day.  It departs Times Square at 9:30, 11:00 a.m., and 2:30 p.m. and it departs the mall at 1:00, 4:00, and 6:00 p.m.

This Black Friday, don’t worry yourself with the insane traffic.  Let us drive you around town!  It will be a circus inside the stores, anyway. (Seriously, Cirque du Soliel will be performing throughout the day in the common areas of the Westfield Garden State Plaza)

The shuttle will run daily (except Sundays) until Christmas Eve.

How Long Can the Knicks Keep it Up? Guess and You Can Win!

The Knicks are Perfect.  The team that many criticized before the season is the only team left in the entire league without a blemish on the record.  How long can they go?  Well, that’s what we’re asking you!

Tweet @GrayLineNewYork with the number of wins that you think the Knicks will have before their first loss and one lucky person who guesses the correct answer will win a backetball autographed by Ride of Fame legend Walt “Clyde” Frazier!  It’s that easy.

So, do you think they’ll win 7 straight? 10? 82?  Click on this link to submit your guess for a chance to win a ball signed by the greatest Knick of them all!

Win this ball!

Upcoming Schedule:

@ San Antonio (7-2) W 104-100
@ Memphis (6-1)
vs Indiana (3-6)
@New Orleans (3-3)

You must be able to pick up your prizes from out Times Square office in NYC or our visitor’s center at 777 8th Avenue within 30 days if you win a twitter contest.  One entry per person.

The Ride of Fame Honors Dionne Warwick (Photos)

On Monday, the Ride of Fame honored Dionne Warwick as an immortal in the IIi campaign.  Here are pictures from the event:

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Photo Credit: Simon Russell / Gray Line New York

*UPDATE* Free Stand-Up Comedy Show on a Double-Decker Bus Scheduled for May 2nd

UPDATE #3: The Comedy Bus is back! We are excited to announce that the comedy bus will be up and running on Thursday, May 2nd, and you all still have a chance to win! 11 people who tweet at @nycgo tomorrow and 11 people who tweet at @GrayLineNewYork on Friday will win a free pair of tickets to the 8 p.m. tour. Be sure to follow both accounts at 2 p.m. tomorrow and Friday for your chance to win. 

UPDATE #2: The Comedy Bus event has been postponed until the spring for a date TBD due to the weather problems we have recently faced in NYC. More information to come soon.

NYC and Company has teamed up with Gray Line New York and the Upright Citizens Brigade to put together a comedy show unlike anything you’ve ever seen.  On November 5th, comedian Chris Wilkes will be doing a live set atop a traveling double-decker bus to help kick off NYC Comedy Week, and all of the tickets to the show are FREE.

In fact, there are going to be two shows on The Comedy Bus the night of the 5th.  The first set will begin at 6 p.m. and the second will begin at 8 p.m.  Both shows will begin just outside of Times Square and travel all around Midtown and Downtown Manhattan while Chris keeps the audience laughing.

While the tickets are free, there is a catch: since there are only so many seats on a bus, you have to win them.  Today at 2 p.m. and on Friday at the same time, @nycgo and @GrayLineNewYork, respectively, will send out a tweet opening the contest up.  The first 11 people who respond will win a pair of tickets to the 6 o’clock show.  It’s that easy.  Tickets for the 8 p.m. show will be given away at a later date by both @nycgo and @GrayLineNewYork.

Due to potentially sensitive language and content, this show will only be open to guests 18 years and older.  For the latest information on The Comedy Bus and Comedy Week and to win tickets to the shows, follow @GrayLineNewYork, @nycgo, @UCBTheatreNY and @chriswilkes1 on twitter now!