You can run into Donald Trump in New York City’s Central Park in four possible places. Since 1999 Watson Adventures has been scouring Manhattan’s favorite outdoor playground for our Secrets of Central Park Scavenger Hunt, and in all that time we’ve always featured two of the places the Republican presidential candidate affected.
But we’re wondering if you can locate a bench with the small, easy-to-miss sign naming Donald J. Trump and his wife Melania. If you’re the first to do so, you could win big.
Wollman Rink or Trump Rink?
Trump made a big impression on the park and New Yorkers in 1986, when he offered to take over for the city in its inept six-year, $13 million effort to renovate the Wollman Rink, a skating rink near the southeast corner of the park. Mayor Ed Koch reluctantly accepted Trump’s offer after pressure from the public. Trump’s organization completed the renovations in time for skating season that year, at a cost of $2.25 million.
But leave it to Donald Trump to make the best deal for himself. In exchange for his largesse, the city granted the Trump Organization the right to operate the rink. Our Secrets of Central Park Scavenger Hunt has long taken hunters past the rink, where they can see the Trump name remains emblazoned on the walls and on the Zamboni machine that keeps the ice smooth. Locals still know the venue as Wollman Rink, but its official name is Trump Skating Rink. A consortium that includes the Trump Organization still runs the rink, as well as Lasker Rink in the park’s northeast corner.
Another stop on our Central Park scavenger hunt is the carousel, featured in the novel The Catcher in the Rye and the movie The Producers (in which Zero Mostel and Gene Wilder discuss their scheme to produce a Broadway flop there). The Trump Organization operates this merry-go-round as well.
Find the Bench, Win Tickets to a Scavenger Hunt
But the bench bearing the Trump name is hardest to find. Do you know where it is? The first person to post the location of the bench on our Facebook page—as well as naming the text on the dedication plate for the bench to the right of Trump—will win free tickets for a team of six to a public staging of our Secrets of Central Park Scavenger Hunt.
Groups can book private hunts in Central Park—and just about anywhere else—as a corporate team building activity and as a social outing. You’ll see the best of the park while answering tricky, humorous questions—it’s like a walking tour spiked with caffeine!
Trump’s Central Park Trademark
By the way, there’s one more surprising connection between Donald Trump and Central Park: According to the Associated Press, Trump has turned a tidy profit from receiving a nonexclusive trademark to use the words Central Park on furniture, pillows, key chains, even chandeliers. (He also holds trademarks to the names Fifth Avenue and Westchester.) A spokesman for Trump would not reveal how much money the savvy businessman has made from the Central Park name, but we suspect the profits have been tremendous and “yuuuge”.
Learn More and Get in the Game!
For more information on private hunts in Central Park—or anywhere else in America— contact us via our online form or call us at 877-946-4868, extension 11.
And while you’re here, check out more stories from the Watson Advenuture’s blog, including a guide to some Perfect After-Hunt Drinks in NYC. The Met Rooftop is on there, in case you’re thirsty after hunting down the Donald’s bench!