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Tavern On The Green

West 67th St. & Central Park West
New York, NY 10023

* Google Maps street view

History - written by Chris Buchner (used with permission)
Built in 1870 by Jacob Wrey Mould, the Tavern was originally used as a sheepfold that held over 200 South Down sheep. After 65 years, park commissioner Robert Moses decided it would be better served as a restaurant. He began a personal mission to oust Mayor Jimmy Walker's casino from the opposite end of the park. When he succeeded, he moved the sheep to Prospect Park in Brooklyn and began the Tavern's conversion.

In October of 1934, Tavern on the Green opened for business. It thrived for the following few decades, embraced widely by New Yorkers, until 1974. The Tavern had lost touch with the times and went out of business. Warner Leroy, the son of Wizard of Oz producer Mervyn Leroy and Doris Warner (Harry Warner's daughter), bought the restaurant and began a two year $10 million renovation. He added glass-enclosed rooms, elegant furnishings and more. The Tavern reopened in August of 1976, and was back better than ever. For over 30 more years, the Tavern was the place to go for Hollywood premier parties or other prestigious events.

On December 31, 2009 the Tavern held its last seating after 75 years of service. New ownership took effect in 2010, but all of the classic Tavern interior and exterior fixtures and topiaries were sold off via auction in January 2010. More information can be found here.


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