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Should we skip the Lower East Side Tenement Museum in hot weather?

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Jun 11th, 2007, 06:43 AM
  #1
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Should we skip the Lower East Side Tenement Museum in hot weather?

Our family of 5 will be in NYC July 7-12. I am interested in visiting the Tenement Museum, but folks have warned to go early in the morning in the summer because the tenements are authentically not air conditioned. It turns out that this is not possible. For the three tours, the earliest times are noon, 1 and 1:20 (depending on the tour). My kids are pretty good travelers, but touring an un-air conditioned space at 1 pm in July may be asking a bit much for all of us. I'm thinking of saving this for a "future" trip in cooler weather. Do you agree?
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Jun 11th, 2007, 06:56 AM
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Perhaps visiting in such weather would make the experience more authentic as you note. Many NYers still live in building such as these. While they may have air conditioning, the general conditions--room size and venitlation--are still tthe same.

I'd do it, but arrive well-hydrated and be ready to relax for a little while afterward if it is indeed very warm.

(Missypie, I feel as if I know you and you're family from all your posts. I'll be on the lookout for your 'family of 5' that week.)
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Jun 11th, 2007, 07:05 AM
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I have to balance the desire for an authentic tenement experience with the lack of desire to hear my kids complain. Of course, it's not THEIR desire for the tenement experience (what 14 year old girl ever expressed a desire for an authentic tenement experience?), it's my feeling that everyone would find it interesting once they were there. The 14 year old especially can't take a lot of heat (she's the one that I'm sure will leave Texas when she's grown!). We may just need to stick with Ellis Island for the immigrant point of view.
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Jun 11th, 2007, 07:10 AM
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FWIW, unless it's an incredibly hot and humid day, you should be fine coming from Texas; I think the humidity will probably be the biggest issue, but that will be true throughout the city...

I have been in the TM in July. I personally found the tour engaging enough that it counteracted the warm temps - but I'm far from 14 years old LOL. It's only an hour, and you do move from room to room, so you're not nodding off in one spot; I also seem to remember floor fans set up in a number of places and your kids can maneuver to stand in front of them.
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Jun 11th, 2007, 07:28 AM
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I took my son to Old Sturbridge Village on what turned out to be a blistering hot day. He was astonished at life without air conditioning, CD players, televisions, cars, microwaves, Air Jordans, McDonalds, even refrigerators, etc. Made his room look like Paradise.

Highly recommend going. Just bring bottles of water and have a place picked out for afterward for cooling off (if it's a hot day) and relaxing and realizing how lucky you all are.
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Jun 11th, 2007, 07:29 AM
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Since you have several days, you could just keep an eye on the weather forecast and choose a day that's cloudy or cooler.
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Jun 11th, 2007, 07:34 PM
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the tour is an hour, but you are not all in one room in the tenement building for an hour - when we did the living history tour (confino) for example, for ten minutes or more we were on the sidewalk outside talking about where we came from, why we would be on the LES after coming in thru Ellis Island, then walked across and up to the apartment - we were inside for about 25-30 minutes, and then down to a lower level room for a ten minute wrap up -

I agree with those who say do it - you will be hot wherever you go if it's that hot out - have a bottled water, dress in light,cool clothing and have an ice cream after ! I think you will be fine.
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