Green-Wood Cemetery celebrates its 175th anniversary

Green-Wood Cemetery turns 175 this year, and the bucolic Victorian attraction offers plenty to see, do and even drink.

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  • Photograph: Aaron Brashear

    Green-Wood Cemetery

  • Photograph: Caroline Voagen Nelson

    Green-Wood Cemetery

  • Photograph: Art Presson

    Green-Wood Cemetery

  • Photograph: Caroline Voagen Nelson

    Green-Wood Cemetery

  • Photograph: Tony Fischer

    Green-Wood Cemetery

Photograph: Aaron Brashear

Green-Wood Cemetery

For nearly two centuries, Brooklyn’s Green-Wood Cemetery has served as a place of peace and tranquility as much for this city’s living, breathing denizens as for its dearly departed movers and shakers. Among the open-air destination’s regular lineup of cultural events is a Historic Trolley Tour (Wed, second and last Sun of the month, 1–3pm; $15, Green-Wood Historic Fund and Brooklyn Historical Society members $10) that lets visitors explore all 478 acres of one of New York City’s original green spaces (its popularity in the mid-1800s helped inspire the creation of Central and Prospect Parks). The national historic landmark honors its 175th anniversary this year with special events both on- and off-site, including “A Beautiful Way to Go: New York’s Green-Wood Cemetery,” an exhibit at the Museum of the City of New York (through Oct 13, see Museums). Green-Wood’s summer calendar is especially jam-packed; here’s how to have some fun amid the final resting places of Leonard Bernstein, Boss Tweed, Jean-Michel Basquiat and other notable New York residents.


Drinks to Die For

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Commune with spirits of the fermented kind when Brooklyn Historical Society’s annual summer beer garden takes up temporary residence in the cemetery’s open meadow, as part of a collaboration to celebrate the organizations’ histories and the borough they share. Indulge in Shake Shack custard and Brooklyn Brewery suds at the cheekily titled Drinks to Die For (July 25, Aug 22 6–8pm; free, drink ticket $5), while live bands serenade.

  1. Green-Wood Cemetery 500 25th St, at Fifth Ave
  2. Thu Jul 25 - Thu Aug 22
More info

Green-Wood Summer Yoga Series

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Instructor Barrie Raffel leads the Green-Wood Summer Yoga Series (Sat 13, Aug 10 8–10am; $25, Green-Wood Historic Fund and Brooklyn Historical Society members $20), a gentle exercise session that uses the tranquil setting to help participants make that all-important mind-body connection. Reflect on the life-extending properties of a healthy self as you practice your downward dog on the picturesque grounds. A post-yoga breakfast includes tea, coffee and snacks from Baked In Brooklyn.

  1. Green-Wood Cemetery 500 25th St, at Fifth Ave
  2. Sat Jul 13 - Sat Aug 10
More info

Moonlight Walking Tour

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Late-night explorers need only a flashlight and all the bravery they can muster to set off on the Moonlight Walking Tour (July 20 at 8:30pm; $20, Green-Wood Historic Fund and Brooklyn Historical Society members $15). Historian Jeff Richman will lead participants through storied grave sites, monuments and catacombs—including those of DeWitt Clinton and painter William Holbrook Beard—under the light of a full moon, with the accompaniment of a live accordionist to up the old-school scare factor.

  1. Green-Wood Cemetery 500 25th St, at Fifth Ave
  2. Sat Jul 20
More info

Green-Wood Cemetery, 500 25th St at Fifth Ave, Sunset Park, Brooklyn (718-210-3080, green-wood.com)


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