Holiday Mondays in New York will be more artfully embellished starting this weekend.
For the first Monday in 30 years, the Metropolitan Museum of Art (Fifth Avenue at 82nd St., 212-535-7710, www.metmuseum.org) replaces the red ''Closed" sign with the green ''Open" beginning tomorrow, Columbus Day. The new policy covers all national Monday holidays through next Memorial Day and the Monday between this Christmas and New Year's Day. The dates are Dec. 29, Jan. 19, Feb. 16, and May 31.
The timing is perfect because the landmark ''El Greco" exhibit of paintings and sculpture by the 16th-century artist opened last week and is up through Feb. 8. There are even more exhibits to see tomorrow, among them ''The Responsive Eye: Ralph T. Coe and the Collecting of American Indian Art"; ''The Dawn of Photography: French Daguerreotypes, 1839-1855"; ''Treasures of a Lost Art: Italian Manuscript Painting of the Middle Ages and Renaissance"; and ''Crossing the Channel: British and French Painting in the Age of Romanticism." The Monday change has a dual purpose, according to the museum. Even though many New Yorkers flee the city on long weekends, the new hours are meant to satisfy those who stay home and those visiting the city. The museum also hopes to boost its revenues.
In honor of the annual Columbus Day parade, which ends near the museum, the Met placed its 16th-century ''Portrait of a Man, Said to Be Christopher Columbus" by Sebastiano del Piombo in the second-floor European Paintings Gallery.