Every year, changes, cancellations, and updates take place up to and throughout OHNY Weekend. Since the Event Guide went to print, several sites and tours have been added. Changes so far are detailed below, with links to the related web listings. For the most up-to-date info before and during the festival, follow us on Twitter and Facebook.








Get Ready: OHNY Weekend Reservations Begin at 11am on October 1!


BK-Newtown Creek_Nicolas Lemery Nantel

Photo: Nicolas Lemery Nantel


Every year, a few weeks before OHNY Weekend, reservations begin for special tours at sites across the five boroughs. While the majority of sites that participate in the Weekend offer Open Access hours on October 11 – 12, some sites require reservations be made in advance due to space or security restrictions. Information about all sites and tours can be viewed at ohny.org. Reservations begin at 11 AM on Wednesday, October 1, at ohny.eventbrite.com.


In 2013, more than 7,000 reservation slots went live on Reservation Day, and 5,500 were spoken for within the first few hours. If you’re a seasoned OHNY Weekend participant you’ve probably got a tried-and-true plan of attack for reserving spots on the tours you most want to attend. But if you haven’t participated in Reservation Day before, we’d recommend taking the following points into consideration as you get ready for the big day!



Photo: Nicolas Lemery Nantel


  • Head straight to Eventbrite: OHNY uses Eventbrite to manage all reservations for OHNY Weekend; each Advanced Reservation tour has its own web listing at ohny.org and a corresponding reservation page on Eventbrite. Reservations cannot be made directly through ohny.org. As such, the best way to ensure that you are able to register quickly for your favored tours on Reservation Day is to go directly to ohny.eventbrite.com, where all Advanced Reservation tours will begin to be listed at 11 AM on October 1.
  • Know the basics: There is a $5 fee, per guest, for each reservation and you will be able to reserve up to 2 spots for each tour. If you are reserving for more than two people on a tour, you will need to go through the reservation process multiple times. This is done to ensure that no one guest is able to book large numbers of spots on any one tour. Once you begin a reservation, you will have eight (8) minutes to complete your reservation, so have your payment information ready before you begin.
  • Eventbrite lists tours by start time, not by title: On Eventbrite, event listings are organized according to the day and time that they are scheduled, rather than alphabetically by title. The fastest way to find the tour for which you want to reserve spots is to go to ohny.eventbrite.com, click “Show All” at the bottom of the list, and do a search and find on the webpage for the tour title.
  • An Eventbrite account will give you an edge: You do not need an Eventbrite account to make reservations for OHNY Weekend tours, but having one can help speed up the reservation process, as Eventbrite will save your name, address, and credit card info (if you grant it permission to do so). This cuts down on the time each reservation will take to complete.



Photo: David Mark Erickson


  • Know your priorities: The more excited you are about a tour, the better the chances that lots of other people are excited about it, too. Tickets for Advance Reservation tours sell out very quickly—so quickly that staff are often inundated with calls from guests who can’t believe that tours are already sold out shortly after tickets go live on Reservation Day. Plan accordingly, and prioritize your list of tours to sign up for. Know going in that you may not have time to secure spots on every tour on your list.
  • And remember: There are more plenty of great Open Access sites that you can visit without a reservation!  The majority of sites participating in OHNY Weekend have Open Access hours on October 11-12, meaning that you already have access to most of the spaces that will be open during OHNY Weekend before reservations even begin. If you can’t get a reservation for a tour, there are still many beautiful, fascinating, and wonderful places to explore during OHNY Weekend!

1811 Commissioners' Plan

Today, in the age of Google Maps, ubiquitous satellite imagery, and GPS-enabled smart phones, everyone has become a cartophile. Thanks to the way that new technological tools have democratized mapmaking, many people now even fancy themselves amateur cartographers. And while this recent burst of interest has generated plenty of frivolous plots and plats, maps are uniquely powerful tools for helping us to understand the world around us: what it looks like, who we share it with, what we have access to.

Maps can also help us to imagine how the world around us might change.

In 1807, for instance, the New York State Legislature appointed a three-member commission to create a comprehensive plan for Manhattan in order to improve public health and better facilitate the city’s increasingly rapid development. The result was the most influential map in the New York City’s history: the Commissioners’ Plan of 1811. Commissioners Gouverneur Morris, John Rutherfurd, and Simeon De Witt proposed that the entire island north of the city’s edge at Houston Street be re-organized into the orderly rectangular grid that we know today.

At the time, most of Manhattan was a rambling patchwork of farms, forests, and family estates, and the grid represented a radical re-organization of territory. Today, the city still maintains the original maps created to help New York’s leaders visualize the northward march of their city. Each Borough President acts as the official map-keeper for their borough, and the panels of the Commissioners’ Plan are tucked away in the Manhattan Municipal Building, the elaborate McKim, Mead, & White confection that is celebrating its centennial this year.

During the 12th Annual OHNY Weekend, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer—a supporter of the festival since it began back in 2003—will open her office to the public to host a very special exhibit of maps charting Manhattan’s development, including the Commissioners’ Plan and several additional, formative maps from throughout the city’s history.

On Saturday, October 11th, participants will be able to visit the 19th floor of the Municipal Building to view:

  • Nine individual 20” x 30” panels of the original 1811 Commissioner’s Plan, covering the East Side from downtown to approximately 59th Street;
  • A copy of the overall Randel grid plan, measuring approximately 30” x 96”;
  • A 48” x 48” original of the rarely-seen 1860 Blackwell Farm maps, which surveyed the area north of 155th Street (where the Commissioners’ Plan terminated), along with dozens of field notes for that map;
  • And the original 1801 Lower Manhattan Survey Map (36” x 36”), featuring the “Collect Pond” located where today’s Javits Federal Building stands today.



Important Dates




The full list of participating sites and programs will become available on ohny.org at 8am on Tuesday, September 30. Sites and tours will be listed in alphabetical order and can be filtered by location or typology.

Digital copies of the 2014 OHNY Weekend Event Guide will also be available for download beginning on September 30 on ohny.org. In the Event Guide, Open Access sites are listed by borough and then by neighborhood, followed by the list of Advance Reservation sites.

Some sites and tours during OHNY Weekend require advance reservations. All visitors can begin making reservations this Wednesday, October 1, beginning at 11 am. To streamline the reservation process, we encourage visitors to go directly to ohny.eventbrite.com to make reservations.


Where to Get an Event Guide




The 2014 OHNY Weekend Event Guide hits newsstands next week as an insert in the October 2 issue of Time Out New York. Free copies of the guide will also be available beginning on September 30 at select distribution sites in all five boroughs listed here.


OHNY Weekend Passports



Want to make the most out of your OHNY Weekend and help support OHNY? Here’s your chance!

OHNY Passports allow you and a guest front-of-the-line access to all sites and programs that do not require advance reservations all day Saturday and Sunday, October 11 & 12, 2014. It’s the best way to save time, see more, and maximize your OHNY experience!

Special for 2014! Travel in style between OHNY Weekend sites with the OHNY Passport Plus, which includes All-Day Access Passes for you and a guest to New York Water Taxi on Saturday, October 11, along with a special map to connect you from ferry stops to nearby sites; a signature Open House New York tote bag; and an advance copy of the 2014 OHNY Weekend Event Guide.

Click here to purchase a Passport today!

The Great OHNY Weekend Cover Challenge



Are you scheming to figure out how you can be the first to snag Advanced Reservation tickets? Well, scheme no more! Enter the Great OHNY Weekend Cover Challenge for you chance to win two (2) tickets to any one Advanced Reservation tour of your choice!

To enter: Hop on the N/Q to the Astoria Boulevard stop and walk over to the Welling Court Mural Project (more info on the cover and Welling Court here). Find the OHNY Weekend Mural near 14-14 28th Avenue, near Astoria Boulevard and post a photo of yourself in front of the mural on Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag #OHNYwknd by September 25, and you’ll be entered into a raffle for two Advanced Reservation tickets. Three lucky winners will be announced on September 26.

Wondering what all the fuss over Advanced Reservation tickets is about? While OHNY encourages every participating site in the Weekend to open their doors to as many people as possible, some sites have physical, security, or safety limitations that make Open Access impossible. Advanced Reservation tours are limited to smaller groups, at set times, meaning that visitors have to sign up in advance. Since space is limited, tickets for Advanced Reservation tours go fast, so the raffle is a great way to increase your chances of securing tickets for a tour of your choice.

While we have not released the full list of sites just yet, trust us: there is some incredible new stuff on the roster this year! For a little teaser on what to expect, follow the hashtag #DailyReveal on Facebook and Instagram, which we will be updating daily—until we release our full list of sites and tours on September 30.