December 2, 2023

Minifigures on Vacation – New York (Day 2)

Day two saw a lot of walking. We took a train from Astoria to Manhattan, where I had some LEGO related touristy things to do. We jumped off the train near Times Square. My wife had some shopping she wanted to do at Uni Qlo, a clothing store we do not have in Montreal. I am normally not a fan of clothing stores, but if you follow me on Pinterest (click here to visit), I posted a picture from Uni Qlo a few months ago on my “LEGO related products board. They have a LEGO line of designer t-shirts, which was a must have for me. One design had my favorite mariachi Minifigures on it, so I picked that one up.

I was saddened to hear that both FAO Schwartz and Toys R Us are no longer in Times Square. Those were two of my favorite destinations from my last trip. We hit Rockefeller Centre instead for the LEGO store. I love this location. It is bigger than your average LEGO store, full of brick sculptures, and their Pick-A-Brick is huge. I spent a lot of time filling up my cup. It was hard to pick with all the selection and pieces I normally don’t get at home. I also got a Lady Liberty Minifigure on a magnet which they only sell in New York. With such a bad exchange rate, I didn’t buy anything else because LEGO is actually cheaper in Canada right now. So, it is only worth buying stuff that I can’t get at home.

After the LEGO Store, we went to Grand Central Terminal since the Japan Week exhibition was going on and my wife wanted to see the Zen garden. We had lunch there as well. It was packed full of people, like most of the rest of the city. I also found it a little dark and unwelcoming in the food court. The main concourse was interesting and true to the station’s “Grand” name, as was the exterior of the building.

Next up was the New York Public Library. This is another grand building in the same style as Grand Central Terminal. Both are from the same opulent era that spawned the Titanic. Interestingly, one of the Library’s major financiers was none other than John Jacob Astor, who was the richest man in the world at the time of his death. Astor died on the Titanic.

The library is really a sight to see. It is all white marble on the interior, which was apparently imported from Greece. We just walked through it, but someday it might be nice to actually sit there are do some research. And, they have more than just books. Apparently they even have locks of hair from famous authors like Charlotte Bronte. From a LEGO lover’s perspective, the children’s library has LEGO recreations of the Library’s iconic lions on display.

LEGO Lions at the New York Public Library.

So ended day two of our trip to New York. Tune in tomorrow for more!

Until next time,