Corey William Schneider, professional underground adventure seeker at New York Adventure Club
Corey scours the city for hidden adventures for New Yorkers, then takes people along for the ride by organizing events around them.
How he got the job: “New York Adventure Club started out as a Facebook group that only boasted a weekly newsletter showcasing interesting NYC events -- I figured if I put together a list of interesting things to do, my friends could be more easily convinced to join me. When that didn't work, I decided to book a private tour once a week for a month at an interesting location. Since I wrote periodic articles at the time for a large NYC culture blog (Untapped Cities), I decided to write the history of one of those tour locations, and at the end, tout that the New York Adventure Club was going. When the article went live, over 100 people joined the group asking for a ticket -- mind you, I wasn't selling tickets as I expected my friends to just pay me cash. That showed there were other people out there interested in urban exploration, and it gave me an opportunity to create a physical community around the idea.
Since I had a corporate job like most New Yorkers, I had to work on New York Adventure Club in my little free time. I knew that to make this concept really work, I would need to create a large and diverse network of New York Adventure Club-only experiences. I wanted Adventure Club to represent everyone's version of adventure, not just my own. I started with organizing one event a week, and then built up the frequency from there in order to put the pressure on myself to continually add new content, and to give my community new experiences. When I started working on NYAC full time, I was able to scale up to at least five events a week.”
Why you’ll want the job: “I have an excuse to walk into any building and see if something interesting is hiding behind its front doors -- that is, of course, if I don't get thrown out by doormen or security guards first. I continue to be surprised every week, whether it's a hidden architectural gem or a tiny business doing something fascinating. The real reward is being able to create an experience around that person or place that others can enjoy. Some of my personal top experiences include climbing into the Grand Central Terminal Tiffany Clock Room, a Halloween party in a gothic crypt, an annual art show called UrbExpo that takes place in the Jefferson Market Library, exclusive explorations through several abandoned military forts like Fort Tilden, and a behind-the-scenes tour through the hidden stores and manufacturers in the Garment District. Every day is Sunday, and technically, I don't have to commute.”
How you can get the job: “Someone can have a job like mine if they thoroughly enjoy crafting relationships within their community, and are willing to put in the time to get to know the people and organizations around them. Those relationships will help generate more opportunities, to the point where all of the best events are coming from your existing contacts. To create an authentic social community, and business, you'll need a lot of time on your hands, as building trust and relationships are not an overnight process. You have to be the most optimistic person in the room -- not every opportunity will come to fruition, so just focus on what you can achieve versus being discouraged and burning bridges.”