Jenna Moonan, the 9/11 Memorial group reservations manager, recently sat down with the MEMO blog to answer some frequently asked questions about bringing a group to the memorial.
Q: How can I make a group reservation?
A: If you’d like to schedule a visit for a group of 16 people or more, our group reservations associates are available Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. to assist you with the process. You can speak with an associate over the phone by calling 212-266-5200. If you prefer to make arrangements by email, you can send a reservation request to email@example.com. To get the process started right away, you should include the following information in your email: desired visit date and time, total number of people in your group, your contact information, and whether or not the group will be dropped off on a bus, as bus drop-off is scheduled.
Q: I’m planning on taking a group to the Memorial in the fall. When should I start planning?
A: Group visits can be scheduled up to six months in advance. We’ve already started booking groups for visits in 2013. Passes are limited, so we highly recommend planning your visit as far in advance as possible.
Q: What is the easiest way to get my group to the 9/11 Memorial?
A: The simplest way for a group to travel downtown would be to take the subway. The 9/11 Memorial is located at the convergence of 11 subway lines. You can find a complete list of lines with stops just blocks from the entry here.
Another great option is to take a ferry or boat ride to one of the nearby docks. The 9/11 Memorial entry is a short distance from the piers at Battery Park, the World Financial Center and the South Street Seaport, servicing groups from midtown, Brooklyn, Staten Island and New Jersey. There’s no better place to snap a photo of the Manhattan skyline than from the river, so I recommend groups take advantage of these options that allow you to sightsee in transit. The memorial’s Official Transportation Partners even let groups reserve their free Memorial passes when they schedule their rides.
If your group chooses to travel by bus, be sure to let your group reservations associate know this in advance. Bus drop-off and pick-up is scheduled as part of your reservation.
Q: What if the time and date preferred is not available?
A: We strive to accommodate as many groups as possible on a daily basis, but space is limited. I recommend having a couple alternative dates and times your group can visit when you contact an associate to schedule a group visit. If you have only a narrow timeframe for a visit, we’ll add your group to a wait list and be in touch if passes become available due to cancellations.
Q: How can I educate my group about 9/11 before our visit?
A: The 9/11 Memorial Commemorative Guide is a great resource for background information about the World Trade Center, the 9/11 attacks and the 9/11 Memorial. Your reservation confirmation email will include a link to the Commemorative Guide.
In addition, the 9/11 Memorial Museum’s education team has developed resources for all ages to learn about 9/11. Educators can access lesson plans for kindergarten through 12th grade and find suggested activities in our downloadable Pre-Visit Materials for the Classroom.
I also encourage everyone to visit names.911memorial.org to learn about the arrangement of names, the very heart of the memorial’s design.
Q: Where do I pick up my group’s passes?
A: You’ll pick up your passes when you arrive with your group, which should be approximately 15 minutes prior to your scheduled entry time. When you arrive, go to Group Check-In at Trinity Pl. and Thames St. A 9/11 Memorial host will greet your group, confirm the reservation, and handout your visitor passes.
Q: Is there a charge to visit the 9/11 Memorial?
A: Visitor passes to the 9/11 Memorial are always free. As a nonprofit organization, the 9/11 Memorial does receive contributions from many of our visiting groups, for which we are always grateful. Contributions are dedicated to developing and sustaining the National September 11 Memorial & Museum.