After eight years and Bill de Blasio is on the way out. And in his final weeks at City Hall, the mayor appears to be taking advantage of his pulpit one final time. 

In the past two weeks, de Blasio has doled out nine keys to the city, a ceremonial honor bestowed upon the five borough’s most esteemed residents. 

What You Need To Know

  • The mayor is set to ceremonially walk out of City Hall on Thursday

  • Before that, he has been handing out keys to the city to some of his allies and celebrities

  • De Blasio is considering running for governor next year

Patti Smith, for one, who serenaded the mayor during his COVID-19 briefing earlier this week. The mayor was singing her praises. 

“When we give the key to New York City, I like to think about the people whose impact keeps growing, growing and growing,” the mayor said. "That is the truth about Patti Smith.”

The mayor’s former neighbor, actor Steve Buscemi, also got one. 

And there were political allies too, like Sen. Charles Schumer. 

And the head of the influential health care workers union 1199. 

“There are many, many reasons for this honor, but I want to make it personal,” the mayor said earlier this month. "I would not have the honor of being your mayor and anything we did in the last eight years, pre-k for all, 3-k or ending stop and frisk. If you think anything we did was good, than we have to thank George Gresham."

Honors all around. He’s once again using his daily briefings to prop up his own family too, just before he makes his way for the exit. 

Both his son, Dante de Blasio, and First Lady Chirlane McCray, appeared alongside the mayor at press conferences earlier this week. 

His spokesperson says the mayor has been reflective and grateful in his final days. But it’s also clear he’s prepping a potential statewide run, taking advantage of a captive audience to discuss topics that could be a part of his potential gubernatorial campaign, like the environment and anti-gun violence initiatives.

De Blasio is slated to do his final ceremonial walkout at City Hall on Thursday. We’re told he is packed up from Gracie Mansion, too, and will move back to Brooklyn.

As for what’s next, the mayor promises he’ll stick around. 

“Public service. It’s been my life,” he said. "It’s what I believe in. It’s what I am going to keep doing."