Tour The Federal Reserve Bank Of New York

As part of my summer goals, I’ve resolved to try all things cultural within NYC.  Some things appeal to me more than others (i.e. French Films at the Paris Theatre over a Yankees game), but in the spirit of having a “Yes” attitude and stepping outside my box, I’m willing to give anything a go.

So yesterday I not only stepped outside my box, I took at giant leap and went to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.  Finance is not quite my forte, but I’m so happy I went!  First of all, it’s like Fort Knox to get into the building, going through layers of police officers and security guards.  I felt pretty important once I finally had my visitor sticker on!

I learned tons of interesting facts…for instance, did you know that the Federal Reserve is an entire city block long, and there’s so many police officers that swarm the place day in and day out that they have their own shooting range inside the bank?  Incredible, eh?

Photo Credit: www.newyorkfed.org

The best part of the tour was without a doubt the gold vault.  To get there, you take an elevator down, and the vault rests 80 feet below street level and 50 feet below sea level on the solid bedrock of Manhattan.  In the basement, there is over 240 billion dollars worth of gold, mostly belonging to foreign governments.  This gold is kept secure by an airtight/watertight vault system, that is under “multiple controls”, meaning no one person has all the combinations necessary to open the vault.

At the end of the tour, they gave each person $1,000, a little token of their affection.  Shredded, that is!  For tour dates and times, please visit their website.

By: Jessica Tiare Bowen