As we wrap up the Oxford Atlas Place of the Year project for 2013, we thought we’d open the floor for some personal Places of the Year — that is, locations which have made a significant impact in our individual lives in 2013. Below are year-end picks from some OUP USA staffers. Feel free to add your contributions in the comments section. Thanks from the Place of the Year committee for coming with us on yet another great season of geographical exploration!
Sam Blum, Publicity Assistant:
My place of the year is my Jiu-Jitsu gym, Alliance Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu NYC. Not only does it serve as a place to clear my mind when the craziness of this city gets too loud, but it’s afforded me great, long-lasting friendships that are truly invaluable.
Alyssa Bender, Marketing Associate:
My place of the year for 2013 is Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Not only is it a place I’ve gone to every September for just about my whole life (and therefore one of my favorite places ever), it is where my fiancé and I got engaged. 2013 has been a fantastic year—in great part due to Hilton Head!
Jeremy Wang-Iverson, Senior Publicist:
This year I’m choosing Duke Farms, Hillsborough, NJ. I visited Duke Farms 3-4 times over the summer; it’s great for an easy day trip out of the city. It’s walking distance from the Somerville station on NJ Transit, so you don’t even need a car to get there. And it’s free!
Penny Freedman, Trade Reference Coordinator:
My place of the year, and possibly my life, is the New York City subway system. I spend at least 10 hours a week on the subway, and it’s where I witness the most bizarre things that stand out the most in my mind throughout the year. This year’s winning moment goes to the man who took his desk chair with him for comfort’s sake.
Purdy, Director of Publicity:
Fresh fruit, delicious food, $2 beers & free boca happy hours, $3 cigs, wandering mariachi, live music on the beach, endless cribbage with Canadians, and diverse population of vacationers rivaling the membership of the UN General Assembly: 2013 was the year I discovered unrivaled hospitality and happiness at the Hotel Rancho de la Playa in Playa Samara, Costa Rica. A hammock at Lo Que Hay around the corner from Rancho comes in a very close second.
Owen Keiter, Associate Publicist:
I’m going to have to go with Big Snow Buffalo Lodge in Bushwick, Brooklyn. This low-key, semi-official, probably-illegal music venue and community space was shut down over the summer when one of the owners was injured as a bystander in an unrelated shooting. (He’s okay now.) Before that, though, Big Snow was the home base of the Bushwick music and arts scene – the kind of place you’ll be reading about in musicians’ memoirs in 30 years. New York music won’t be the same without it.
Oxford’s Atlas of the World — the only world atlas updated annually, guaranteeing that users will find the most current geographic information — is the most authoritative resource on the market. The milestone Twentieth Edition is full of crisp, clear cartography of urban areas and virtually uninhabited landscapes around the globe, maps of cities and regions at carefully selected scales that give a striking view of the Earth’s surface, and the most up-to-date census information. The acclaimed resource is not only the best-selling volume of its size and price, but also the benchmark by which all other atlases are measured.
The Oxford Atlas Place of the Year 2013 is Syria. The Oxford Atlas Place of the Year is a location — from street corners to planets — around the globe (and beyond) which has attracted a great deal of interest during the year to date and judged to reflect the important discoveries, conflicts, challenges, and successes of that particular year. Learn more about Place of the Year on the OUPblog.