We’re in manic weather swing-season here in New York City, which means that the sun will soon shine on the Eastern seaboard and someone will have the bright idea of bringing you to Central Park for an afternoon.
Luckily, the Central Park Conservancy has relaunched the official Central Park app, so that you don’t have to wander around in the heat/rain/hail (who can predict these days) with no idea where you’re going among a swarming mass of post-hibernation New Yorkers.
The map section is the hands-down best feature — you can find where you are, click around to the surrounding attractions, and nab the closest audio tour. The tours are narrated by a host of quintessential New York City superstars: Scarlett Johansson, John Lithgow, Whoopi Goldberg and Matthew Broderick, among others.
Of course, a discrete “donate” button is ever-present on various pages of the app.
“As a non-profit, we raise 75% of the budget necessary,” Rebecca Stern, a Central Park Conservancy representative, told Betabeat. “We hope it raises awareness that their donations help keep the park clean and beautiful.”
The app is a little insular — the Twitter section only includes tweets from the Central Park Conservancy, and the blog section contains a single post from early February. A more sophisticated app could have pulled in all tweets about Central Park, or fed in events from Meetup.com for a more complete picture of what’s happening day by day in the park.
Regardless, it’ll get any tourist through the best locales without having to wander aimlessly, and can keep you from getting lost on your way to overpay for the aged sirloin at Loeb Boathouse on your next anniversary date.
Or, as Gothamist suggests, you can put on the Scarlett Johansson audio tour segments and pretend you’re on a Central Park date straight out of the movie Her.