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Making a Different Kind of Connection at Breakneck Ridge

Breakneck RidgeLace those boots up tight.
Be sure to pack some water — it's Breakneck Ridge, after all.

Thanks to the MTA Board and its recently approved property lease to the Town of Fishkill, hikers (including perhaps you?) will be better equipped than ever before to trek up the challenging mountain.

• How about new, mini-high level platforms at Metro-North's rustic Breakneck Ridge Station?

• How about...

– a welcome center,

– new fencing,

– safety rails and

– formal on-ground parking areas?

• And how about a brand new trail — the Breakneck Ridge Connector — joining the Hudson Line station to the Breakneck trailhead?

All of these features — big and small — will be coming your way in the future! Breakneck Ridge Station

Our Breakneck Ridge Station – which is just north of Cold Spring Station —

provides weekend and holiday service to hikers interested in taking on the popular Breakneck Ridge Trail.

The station's convenient location to the trail offers hikers an attractive alternative to driving, particularly given the limited parking in the area.

The Breakneck Ridge Connector

Breakneck Ridge Connectoraddresses the growing popularity of the station while making access to the trail safer and more inviting. It is the first segment to be built of a proposed Hudson Highlands Fjord Trail, a roughly seven-mile trail that would link the Village of Cold Spring and the City of Beacon.

Rather than navigating ad hoc pathways, trail users will be able to take a 12-foot-wide trail that provides a separate and protected direct path from the station to the trailhead.

The current low-level platforms at the Breakneck Ridge Station will be replaced with mini-high level platforms that provide ADA accessibility.

New fencing will be built to help discourage trespassing onto Metro-North tracks, and railing will be installed along elevated sections of the trail.

When hikers arrive at the trailhead, they'll be greeted by a welcome center and trail information signs. (Currently on weekends, NY-NJ Trail Conference Stewards are also on hand to provide orientations to arriving hikers on what to expect from the challenging mountain.)

With its variety of trail loops, rock scrambles, and panoramic views of the Hudson River, Storm King Mountain and Hudson Valley, the Breakneck Ridge Trail is considered one of the best hiking trails in New York State, and also one of the most difficult.

Luckily, you will be able to relax on a Hudson Line train and arrive there well rested for your hike!

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Apparently There Are Second Acts... in Garrison!

When the dust has settled and the job is done, a 4,500-square-foot piece of property situated between the Philipstown Depot Theatre and Metro-North's railroad tracks at Garrison Station will be upgraded thanks to an arrangement between the railroad and the theatre.

The MTA Board has approved a license agreement granting the theater the authority to improve and upgrade this underutilized property

(previously the old low-level platform area no longer used by Metro-North), creating a welcoming plaza area for the theatre behind the building.

MNR property behind Philipstown Depot TheatreWhile programming at the Philipstown Depot Theatre has flourished, the plaza outside the theatre's box office has languished.

Under the agreement, the theater will contract workers to remove and replace the property's uneven and broken concrete and asphalt, resurface the location, install new lighting and drainage, restore original lampposts and create outdoor seating.

The project will also make the property behind the theatre building safer by reducing the possibility of slip and falls on patchy concrete.

MNR property behind Philipstown Depot Theatre with TracksThe theatre will assume the cost of the plaza renovations, saving the MTA $60,000.

The renewed plaza is expected to be completed this year.

We're pleased to be working with the Philipstown Depot Theatre to create a plaza that will enhance an arts center that benefits Hudson Valley residents.

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Is it 1991 Again?

Amtrak Empire Service LogoWhile we do miss Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch, we are sorry to report they aren't making a comeback.

But you may have noticed that after a 26-year absence, Amtrak has returned to Grand Central this summer... but only temporarily!

Three round-trip Empire Service trains (six total trains) are operating between Albany-Rensselaer and the Terminal as Amtrak's emergency repair work takes place at Penn Station through Sept. 1.

The project requires the construction-related closure of several tracks at Penn, which handles roughly 600,000 passengers per day for Amtrak, the Long Island Rail Road and New Jersey Transit — far more than it was designed for back in the 60s.

Amtrack in GCTWith the rehabilitation of the Spuyten Duyvil Railroad Bridge in the late 80s and the completion of the Empire Connection into Penn Station, Amtrak's Empire Service traveling between New York and Albany no longer had to use Grand Central.

But they are back now, and we're happy to assist until the work in Penn Station is done!

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Room With a View!

The Terminal's West Dining Concourse is hosting a yearlong photography exhibit, "Grand Central Revealed: Photographs of the west façade,"

as part of MTA Arts & Design's Lightbox program, which presents photographic exhibits at select MTA stations. GCT western façade

Lynn Saville's recently installed exhibit of the western façade of Grand Central Terminal, is particularly apt at this location since it showcases a view of the terminal that will vanish again in a New York minute: for the first time in nearly a century, the terminal's western façade can be seen at street level in an uninterrupted, sweeping view.

Five buildings spanning an acre-sized city block were demolished to prepare for the construction of One Vanderbilt,

a 1,401-foot-tall office tower due to be completed in 2020, but this impressive view of Grand Central will be blocked again once One Vanderbilt starts to rise above ground level later this year.

Saville, a fine-arts photographer, sought to capture this unique moment in the city's architectural history,

as well as daily moments of this unique view such as the traffic of the quintessential New York rush hour, dawn and dusk and the times in between, and the way light from nearby buildings reflect onto the western façade. Saville's work in long-exposure, large-format photographs typically feature built spaces and artificial as well as natural light, often in contrast together, and framed cinematically.

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Have a Swinging Summer!

Jazz in the Valley All you "hep cats" and "kittens" can take Metro-North to the
17th annual Jazz in the Valley Festival

this Sunday, August 20 at Waryas Park, Poughkeepsie (gates open at 11 AM, music starts at 12 Noon.)

Listen to traditional jazz with an ear towards the future performed by renowned musicians, while soaking up the exquisite views of the Hudson River Valley. The music begins at noon, featuring performances by Randy Weston, Randy Brecker, Javon Jackson, Jimmy Cobb, and Charenee Wade.

Getting there is easy: Purchase your discount "Getaway" package from any Metro-North ticket office or full-service ticket machine (excluding Poughkeepsie Station).

It's a short walk from the Poughkeepsie Station

Voilà Chocolat If the sweet sounds of the saxophone don't move you, try our Getaway to Voilà Chocolat ...

...and learn how to work with fine tempered chocolate, gourmet ingredients and toppings for personalization and decoration (and eating, too)!

Drop in or make a reservation for à-la-carte activities, attend an educational group class or host a birthday party.

Show your Metro-North train ticket to enjoy a 20% discount on "Make your Own 16 Truffle Box."

Getting there is easy: Take the Hudson, Harlem or New Haven Line to Grand Central Terminal. or to Times Square. Transfer to the Uptown and take it to 79th Street Stop.

Rye PlaylandAnd, for those who crave adventure

(and not chocolate), we are pleased to report the dragon is back this summer!

No, not in "Westeros." In Rye, at Playland! And you can ride the Dragon Coaster, the SuperFlight Coaster, Music Express and Double Shot... there are more than 50 major and Kiddyland rides and attractions, a beach, pool, and pier on the Long Island Sound, lake boating, entertainment, fireworks, lots of great food...

And best of all...
Getting there is easy: Our New Haven Line takes you to Rye, where a shuttle bus meets select trains throughout the day.

Harlem WeekIt’s Happening in Harlem!

It's so much fun, it's the week that needs a month: Take Metro-North to Harlem Week (now through August 30)!

Many events happen in walking distance from our Harlem-125th Street Station!

This year's theme is "Honoring New York's International Diversity."

Harlem Week's celebration continues to expand even as it enters its 43rd year, with the inclusion of free concerts, street fairs, sports events, movies, health seminars and cultural activities. It's a month-long, non-stop tribute to the vibrancy and vitality of the Harlem community.

Getting there is easy: Walk toward the west side from the Harlem-125th Street Station (there is frequent service on the Hudson, Harlem and New Haven lines.)

See all of our getaway packages, enough to keep you busy for the whole year!

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Safety Rule of the Issue

Brdige Plate Safety Rules Bridge plates are currently in use at select stations to accommodate track work.

Please use caution when crossing them and follow these rules:

• Never wait on the bridge plate for your train. Don't stand on it as a train is entering or leaving the station.

• Don't step on the bridge plate until your train has come to a complete stop.

• Do allow customers to exit the train before getting on the bridge plate.

• Don't crowd onto the bridge plate. Cross it one person at a time.

Thank you for your cooperation.

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    Courtesy Corner



Just why are they called the "dog days of August"?

Some believe it is because during this month, Sirius, the "Dog Star" (not Rin Tin Tin?) rises at the same time as the sun.

Others believe this is the time of year that dogs go crazy from the summer heat. (We noticed most just seem lethargic, like their owners...)

And those who take our trains feel it has to do with people taking off their shoes and putting their "dogs" up for a rest on the seat opposite them.

We can tell you, it definitely isn't that last one (we're going with the "Sirius" explanation).

Even if your "dogs" feel like they are going to go "mad" by the end of a sweltering August day, please keep your shoes on and keep your feet off the seats. (Your fellow commuter may need to sit in one!)

It's the courteous thing to do!

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Corporate & Public Affairs, MTA Metro-North Railroad
420 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10170

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