1. Guess who’s coming to the Library’s landmark 42nd Street building on Friday, Aug. 3? That’s right, Sesame Street's one and only Cookie Monster is joining celeb chef Rocco DiSpirito at the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building at 10 a.m. for a free cooking demonstration for kids, part of our KidsLIVE series. Rocco will make (and distribute) healthy cookies, teaching children that food can be both healthy AND delicious. Rocco’s Now Eat This! Food Truck (a non-profit venture that sells healthy comfort food to raise money for hungry kids) will be outside the Library selling goodies that day, as well. We are psyched for this event (which is connected to our free Lunch Hour NYC exhibition), as is Cookie Monster, who actually told us, “Oh boy, oh boy! Me so excited!” (he really did - it’s in our press release). Space is limited, so reserve a few slots now!

    Guess who’s coming to the Library’s landmark 42nd Street building on Friday, Aug. 3? That’s right, Sesame Street's one and only Cookie Monster is joining celeb chef Rocco DiSpirito at the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building at 10 a.m. for a free cooking demonstration for kids, part of our KidsLIVE series. Rocco will make (and distribute) healthy cookies, teaching children that food can be both healthy AND delicious. Rocco’s Now Eat This! Food Truck (a non-profit venture that sells healthy comfort food to raise money for hungry kids) will be outside the Library selling goodies that day, as well. We are psyched for this event (which is connected to our free Lunch Hour NYC exhibition), as is Cookie Monster, who actually told us, “Oh boy, oh boy! Me so excited!” (he really did - it’s in our press release). Space is limited, so reserve a few slots now!

  2. Joe’s Restaurant in Brooklyn — just one of the newly digitized menus in the Library’s collection that you can help transcribe. Have you checked out What’s on the Menu yet? 

    Joe’s Restaurant in Brooklyn — just one of the newly digitized menus in the Library’s collection that you can help transcribe. Have you checked out What’s on the Menu yet? 

  3. Help Us Transcribe Our Historic Menus!

    How much was a rib-eye steak in 1901? What desserts were popular in the 1800s? Were bluefish available off the coast of New York City in 1920? All of these answers and more can be found in our still-growing menu collection, which includes over 40,000 menus from the 1840s to the present (including this beautiful Ye Waverly Inn menu from the 1960s). Although anyone can currently request to see these menus at our Stephen A. Schwarzman Building in New York City, we are trying to make the collection even more accessible - but we need your help. We’re calling on the public to check out What’s On The Menu, a new initiative that lets foodies actually transcribe our menus digitally so everything in them - dishes, prices, etc - can be searched. For example, if someone is researching the history of oysters now, they have to go to our 42 Street building and flip through every single menu to see how much oysters cost, how they were prepared or which were available in New York City over time. With this new initiative (mentioned in the NY Times, the NY Post and other outlets) all the researcher would have to do is type “oysters” into our search engine and see every mention of the shellfish in all of our thousands of menus. Cool, right? Well the public has responded so far - as of this second, 170,466 dishes have been transcribed from 2,767 menus. But keep it coming, guys! C’mon - it’s fun!

  4. Food may be forbidden there, but the New York Public Library still has the best menus in town.

    — Jeremy Olshan of the NY Post, who today wrote a great piece on our menu collection (which is currently at about 40,000 menus and still growing) and an upcoming project to digitize them with the public’s help.