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Lugging shopping bags and hustling between meetings is the picture of a typical visit to New York, although if you slow down, the island of Manhattan has more to offer. You will see sights that open your sense to all that can be accomplished when inner creativity is unleashed. Manhattan brings us back to the child-like wonder of all that the world has to offer.  

As you walk down Wall Street you are faced with an imposing view of the New York Stock Exchange with a giant American flag hovering over its entrance. The exchange began in 1792 as a meeting of 24 stockbrokers under a buttonwood tree and incorporated in 1817 as the New York Stock and Exchange Board. The earliest securities traded were mostly government securities such as Revolutionary War Bonds and First Bank of the United States stock.

It is commonly referred to as the Big Board. The NYSE is open for trading Monday through Friday from 9:30 am – 4:00 pm ET, with the exception of holidays declared by the Exchange in advance. The NYSE trades in a continuous auction format, where traders can execute stock transactions on behalf of investors. They will gather around the appropriate post where a specialist broker, who is employed by a NYSE member firm (that is, he/she is not an employee of the New York Stock Exchange), acts as an auctioneer in an open outcry auction market environment to bring buyers and sellers together and to manage the actual auction.

That's what happens inside the building. Outside, the architectural details of the columned entry and the marble statues overhead, are pause-worthy. 

The New York Stock Exchange has the highest financial value of any the world's stock markets and is the principal point of national economic activity. The value of its indexes is closely tracked daily as a barometer of the health of the nation's economy.

Explore the area in the middle part of Manhattan and a striking monument will emerge in Liberty Park as a memory of the worst day in recent American history.

I remember in vivid details, what I was doing when I heard the news on that fateful day in September of 2001 when the country was attacked by terrorists. Liberty Park is a one-acre elevated public park at the World Trade Center in New York City, overlooking the National September 11 Memorial & Museum.

The park and sculpture are located above the Vehicular Security Center and opened on June 29, 2016. In the park, we see The Sphere which previously was located at the base of the World Trade Center. It is a large cast bronze sculpture by German artist Fritz Koenig, had stood in Austin J. Tobin Plaza between the World Trade Center towers in Manhattan.

Recovered from the rubble after the September 11 attacks, the sculpture represents the disaster and America's resilience.

A landmark that many people will use to either enter or leave New York City is Grand Central Station. Grand Central Terminal is a commuter rail terminal located at 42nd Street and Park Avenue in Midtown Manhattan.  It is the second busiest train station in the United States after New York's Penn Station.

Grand Central Terminal was built by and named for the New York Central Railroad. Grand Central covers 48 acres and has 44 platforms. Its platforms serve 30 tracks on the upper level and 26 on the lower.

The terminal has many different food and retail venues to serve passengers and visitors. The interior of the terminal has been widely noted for its opulent decor. Look beyond the hustling crowds and dwell a moment beside the glamorous marble staircase. It's the same staircase in the Kevin  Costner movie, The Untouchables. However, the centerpiece that captures everyone's attention is the central clock with four opal faces and gold construct. I stopped to admire the clock, while others took a quick glance and raced to their next train.

The New York Grand Central Terminal was constructed in 1871, although it was later remodeled in 1913 with its current design approved by the Board consisting of Cornelius Vanderbilt II, William Rockefeller, and J.P. Morgan.

One of the most memorable things that we did during our stay in New York City was attending a current show at one of the many theaters in the Theater district. This district is commonly referred to as Broadway as its principally is on Broadway Avenue and consists of 41 professional theaters with each seating over 500 customers.

Broadway is very a very popular tourist attraction yearly with attendance exceeding 17 million. The majority of shows will be musicals although some dramatic plays are also available.

While we were exploring the many exciting places in Manhattan, we were happy to find that within Manhattan Island is a park where can you stroll and relax among the trees and along its lakeshores. Central Park in Manhattan is located between the Upper West Side and Upper East Side. It covers over 800 acres with over 25,000 trees and is a popular location for both locals and visitors.

The park was established in 1857 with an initial size of 778 acres with its layout created by Frederick Olmstead and Calvert Vaux with the park opening in 1858. The park is maintained by the Central Park Conservancy, a private, not-for-profit organization that manages the park under a contract with the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation.

Near the edge of Central Park is Strawberry Fields, a mini-park that is dedicated to the memory of John Lennon who was killed nearby, outside The Dakota Apartments.

We explored areas awakening our wonder of culture, architecture, renewal and landscaped woodlands. Are you ready to awaken your inner child?  Manhattan has all of these sights and many more as well, you can do this too, when you make your next visit. 

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