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Golden Opportunity By Nino Lo Bello .NEW YORK -- Alas, too many tourists miss a golden opportunity in "The Big Apple" when they don'"t take advantage of a free tour that enables them to descend 80 feet below the Wall Street district to stand in front of $17 billion in gold--the largest known hoard anywhere in the world, not excluding all that yellow metal squirreled away at Fort Knox. If you give the Federal Reserve Bank of New York at least a day's advance notice (but preferably"48 hours, if convenient), a' guide will take you personally, or in groups of up to ten. right to the most staggering tourist treat in the world--a visit to a pile of gold belonging to the U n i t e d Slates and to 70 foreign countries. How odd that only a mere 10,000 tourists a year take advantage of this freebie--and yet it is one of the most awesome tours any visiting fireman will ever have. Inside the underground treasure chest the gold is stored neatly in 122 gray, steel compartments, which are individually secured by a padlock, two combination locks and an auditor's seal. The largest single crypt is stacked from floor to ceiling w i t h more than 100.000 gold bars worth over $1.5 billion, and although the friendly but tightlipped guards on duty (there are always three present during your visit) won't tell you which country owns which cell, no one will deny that the biggest cell belongs to the Soviet Union. It's not generally known, by the way. that the Moscow regime and the Red countries store most of their gold in America. As you enter the vault, you are Calendar of Events HARRISBURG, Pa.-The Pennsylvania Bureau of Travel Development today announced the availability of a comprehensive 112-page calendar of events giving details on the hundreds of Bicentennial and other activities scheduled throughout the state from now to December. Designed for easy use, the calendar lists events by date and each listing includes a description, time and location, and how to obtain additional information. There also are three special sections offering geographical listings for performing arts, exhibits and shows, and professional sports. According to Paul Decker, director of the bureau, the calendar "is the most comprehensive prepared by Pennsylvania, r e f l e c t i n g the many diverse activities and celebrations planned for this Bicentennial Year as we fulfill our role as host to the nation." A copy of the Pennsylvania Calendar of Events is available upon request from: Bureau of Travel Development, Rm. 432, South Office Building, Harrisburg, Pa. 17120. State Magazine. June 20. 7.976 faced with Compartment No. 86. which has been set up as a display. This one holds 5,160 bars valued at about $88 million. Unfortunately, Fed rules do not permit you to take home any souvenirs (end of standard wisecrack all the guards hear down below), nor are you allowed, alas, to shoot any pictures of yourself s t a n d i n g in front of all"that wealth. "All of the bars weigh about 400 troy ounces and are worth approximately $17.000 each," explains guide Sonya Fujarski. "They measure 7 inches in length, 3 5 /s inches in width and between 1% inches to l ; l i inches in thickness. Most of the gold here is in the form of 'fine' bars of 99.5 per cent or better pure gold. The butter-yellow ones are the so-called 'fine' bars that contain unalloyed newly mined gold, whereas the somewhat copperish ones are made of gold recovered from coins and jewelry." Each bar is identified with various numbers, one for the particular owner and others to identify the smelter and when and where the bar was cast. The bars molded abroad are trapezoidal, while the ones done in the American mints are rectangular with straight sides. However, bars from the Denver Mint have rounded corners, whereas those made in San Francisco or New York have sharp corners. The storage of about $17 billion of gold, not to mention billions of dollars in coins, paper money and securities, is done under the tightest security. After you have been led into the vault, the first thing you notice is that there was no door. You made your entry via a narrow passageway cut into a rotating steel cylinder. This cylinder is nine feet high, weighs 90 tons and rotates in a 140-ton steel frame. To close this entry the slightly tapered cylinder is t u r n e d h a l f w a y and lowered ''stlis of an inch, like a cork in a bottle, which also makes for an airtight and watertight seal. Once past this cylinder and inside the vault, which resembles a series of prison cells, you are told that only through the working of time locks controlling the combinations can the cell gates be opened later. This is e f f e c t u a t e d solely u n d e r "multiple control," which means that no single person knows all the combinations. The whole area is of course protected by closed-circuit TV monitors. Because international monetary t r a n s a c t i o n s f r e q u e n t l y require moving the 27-pound gold bars from one compartment to another, the underground staff has the hard job of stacking and re-stacking the bars. To protect their feet against a bar dropped by accident, the workers wear lightweight but strong magnesium shoe covers. Hydraulic lifts and conveyor belts are also put into use. Understandably enough, inasmuch as the gold bars are the size of a building brick, the stackers are never searched before they leave the vault each day. Besides, all v a u l t personnel have been thoroughly screened before being hired. The way the Federal Reserve carries out your visit to the subterranean Manhattan hoard gets an "A" for effort and, in my book, the tour itself gets a gold star because it is a gold mine. BALLOU SLEDGE Realtors P.O. Box 28 ATUNTIC BEACH, *C. 28512 Phone 919/726-2531 REALTOR Directly on the Waterfront THE TIDES All Varieties Fishing N e a r , 1362 W e s t Ocean View Avenue NORFOLK VA. 23503 Phone 804/588-0443 HOTEL APIS. 4 PERSONS 18.00 Daily AIR CONDITIONED. SWWMING POOL, PRIVATE BEACH. Oceanana Family Resort Motel A Family Wonderland OCEAN FRONT ATLANTIC BEACH, N.C. Phone (919) 726-4111 9 No traffic noiseordanger Â· Modern Luxurious Double beds 9 Rooms and 2 Â· 3 room Apts. Restaurant 9 Free deluxe patiobrcak'asl Â· P r i v a t e beach Â· Deluxe Swimming pool. Refrigerator in every room. 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Buckroe Beach, Va. 23664 Phone(804)851-9131 WWWWVIMIMIMW THOMAS REALTY CO. Phone 803/249-1712 WRITE BOX 323Â» FOS fUUV ILLUSTRATED BROCHURE NORTH MTRTU BEACH, S.C. 29582 REAL ESTATE Cherry Grove Section HUSSEY REALTY CO. Â·BUI isTiu sius-iusts t nmuun MÂ»IS NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. 29582 803/249-1475 Directly on the Ocean Crescent Village Motel Â· ROOMS--COLOR CABLE TV Â· KITCHENETTES Â· GOLF PRIV. Â· AIR CONDITIONED Â· HEATED POOL--KIDDIE POOL Phone 803/272-6904 FAMILY MOTH. SÂ»lh Ocm etvi, f.O. Boi IM7 NOBTH MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. 39582 Vlnie Carroll, Owner ANCHOR INN MOTEL Cherry Grovc Sot-lion .Norlh M r(lÂ«- Brac-h, S.f. 2!Â»51!i Â· 22-3 Room Elfic. Apli. Â· Room' Â»Â» *Â·' Cond.. ColÂ« IV Â· Go't Priv. Â· Acrem SlrMt from Fnliing f'tti Â· Rvtkiiiranu and Marketing N*or Â· Swinwning Pool Â· ChiloVwi Wnkomed Â· Rettrvotionl AcftitobI*. Write or Phone 803/249-2518. Boi 3087 Rocky Bob Pruiu GOLD (OAST MOTEL In Delightful Cherry Grove '3901 N. 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