“The best table in town” – West Side Rag

Photograph by Meg Miller.

By Carol Tannenhauser

Monday, July 25, 2022
Scattered thunderstorms, potentially severe, high 89 degrees.

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The Loeb Boathouse in Central Park is set to close Oct. 16, due to “rising labor and property costs,” The New York Times reported. 163 employees will be laid off and countless New Yorkers will suffer the sadness that accompanies further shrinkage of our city.

Courage, no matter what the New York Post says! The Boathouse won’t really be closing, in our humble opinion; at least not forever. The New York City Department of Parks and Recreation won’t let him. As they have found a new operator for Wollman Rink, they will find one for the Boathouse, “as soon as possible”, they told The Times. It means too much for a city that has faced so much loss and fought so valiantly over the past few years to let go.

Here’s how some Rag readers remember the Boathouse:

I will never forget the sound of all tongues chattering in competition with the clamor of silver forks and knives, against the backdrop of young lovers and families trying to make their way around the lake. Somehow waiting for the food to arrive at the Boathouse was irrelevant.

For some, it was a place of consecration.

I married the love of my life at the Boathouse. The location was the first place that came to mind when I started planning, due to its location in one of the most magical places on earth. We met in New York and spent a lot of time in Central Park, so it was like a representation of us…

For some, it was out of reach.

My husband and I loved this place even though we only ate out a few times. When we got married we thought it would be great to do it at the boathouse…until we found out how much it would cost…

Some never went.

Believe it or not, I have never been to the Boathouse. Mad. I hope someone good comes along to make it work properly (even if it’s high end) because it’s too good a place to be lost forever. It’s a diamond in the rough, in my opinion.

All could appreciate its beauty.

[I remember] the rowboats floating on the lake, rain or shine, the glory of gazing at the steel of the skyline juxtaposed against the pale green patina of Essex House in the distance, combined with the hunger and longing for a fresh libation at the best table in town.

So wait for his return with the hope of a bride who married there.

I’m optimistic about the future of the Loeb Boathouse — I hope whoever takes over will hire me as a consultant because I have so many great ideas… and just want to hang a picture of my wedding!

Thanks to Jules, Anna, Ann and Sharon for the memories.

Note: Manny, one of the hosts, told us that “the rowboat rental concession will stop operating when the Boathouse closes – unless someone takes over first”, he said. he adds.

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