Anyone whose ever walked past the New York Public Library branch located on 42nd Street can vouch for the beauty of its architecture, and the amount of people who stop to take pictures or explore its contents attest to that feature. IMG_5680Due to my extremely close proximity to the library, I have spent several hours completing term papers and studying for finals within the quiet DeWitt Wallace Periodical Room on the first floor (although in nice weather I much prefer to study outside behind the library at Bryant Park). When you first enter the massive building, you will be instructed to open any bags on your person and display their contents so that security can perform a quick inspection to ensure the safety of all visitors, and you can then enter the library according to your own terms or take advantage of the information desk and inquire about the various exhibits, floors, and rooms composing the NYPL. Looking to get some work done and need a quiet area to concentrate?IMG_5685 Head over to one of the designated research rooms (the Art & Architecture room on the 3rd floor, for example) or a “mixed-use” room (like the General Research Division Services or the Milstein Division). If appreciating the beauty of an elegant and historic building is more your style, look no further than one of the prominent exhibits on display, like “Preserving a Masterpiece: From Soaring Ceilings to Subterranean Storage.” Just a casual visit? Feel free to metaphorically forage your own path and stroll around the library taking in all it has to offer. You can even refresh yourself with a breakfast pastry, salad, sandwich, or one of the other options available at Amy’s Bread Café, located on the first floor right by the entrance and exit. IMG_5690There are a variety of programs offered at the Schwarzman Building- over 80,000 per year- designed to appeal to a vast scope of people, from programs geared towards toddlers and providing an environment in which they, and their parents, can form new friendships, to scholarly discussions of literary classics, to language lessons and even career seminars. You can also take a tour led by an employee or an audio tour, watch a film divulging the details of the Schwarzman Building, make purchases supporting the library from the Readers & Writers Shop, and even check out the stuffed animals that were used as inspiration for Winnie the Pooh. IMG_5692This historic building has aspects that appeal to such a massive audience of people, and whether you just want to escape from the sweltering heat of the summer in a chilled environment bursting with decor, programs, and artifacts, or you genuinely want to explore the famed building, the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building is guaranteed to please.

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