Maybe it's because the authors lived here, but dozens of classic books for kids are set in the center of New York. Crickets in their pages hang out, not in cornfields, but in Midtown. Mice don't run down country lanes: They sail boats in Central Park.
When it was announced last week that Sierra Boggess and Norm Lewis would step into The Phantom of the Opera this May, most of the press was about the fact that Lewis was to become the first black Phantom on Broadway. I didn't care about that.
In the 1930s and '40s, Busby Berkeley (1895-1976) staged a series of movie dance numbers that could rival the paintings of Salvador Dali in their outlandishness. His movies were loaded with jaw-dropping optical illusions and wound up influencing everyone from the Coen Brothers to Mel Brooks.
It may be August, but there's still time to sneak in that summer vacation. The key to a relaxing trip is making sure you're properly equipped before you leave, with the right luggage, the right information, and the right tools.