Grand Central Terminal turns 100 with big birthday bash

Posted at 7:03 PM, Feb 01, 2013
and last updated 2013-02-01 19:03:31-05

It didn’t matter how they got there, hundreds of people from all over the tri-state area and the world flocked to Grand Central Terminal to celebrate 100 years of service.

“We had a lot of good times here and wanted to come and wish a happy birthday to Grand Central,” said Ed Frank of

Grand Central opened to the public at high noon on Feb. 1, 1913. Twenty minutes later the first train left the station, and
100 years later the building continues to stand strong.

“It’s just so beautiful, the marble is gorgeous, the lighting fixtures are beautiful, it’s just a beautiful gateway into the city,”
Judith Woeckener of  Greenwich, Conn.

A gateway that more than 750,000 people travel through each day.

Most of them rushing from one train to another or hurrying to get to work or back home. But today many of those commuters slowed down, taking a moment to enjoy the festivities and fanfare.

“We’re always in such a hurry that taking time out for this celebration was apropos,” said Allan Singer  of Bensonhurst

Politicians, athletes, actors, and artists all with ties to the terminal shared their memories.

“I loved how many different kinds of New Yorkers came out to celebrate,”  said Matthew Baker of Astoria.

It’s been a busy 100 years for the New York landmark.

In addition to its regular role as a commuter hub, the terminal has been the backdrop for movies, and was almost demolished back in late 60’s.

But a face-lift in the 90’s helped restore a little luster and renewed the stations world wide reputation.

“Mention Grand Central and they’d say oh yeah I know where that is, that’s in New York,” said  Mario Sclafani.

While most people travel through Grand Central trying to get someplace else, for some the terminal is the final destination.

“You could come to Grand Central and just stay all day in Grand Central and not walk out of the building and it’s great,” said Rose Stanton of Thornwood.

“You know it’s funny, growing up, when people would come and go from our house very quickly, my mother used to say that it was like Grand Central Station.  So, it was really cool today to see everybody come to a stop for a few minutes.”