Contrary to what was reported by the Brooklyn Paper, Carroll Gardens resident and National Public Radio's Studio 360 host Kurt Anderson is not envisioning a permanent change or displacement of the ball courts in Carroll Park. Instead, he would like to bring even more vitality to our neighborhood oasis by helping to organize a few summer events that will allow everyone in the community to come together for a few themed evenings during the summer.
The meeting was attended by Mr. Anderson and his wife Anne Kreamer, Councilman Lander and four officers of the Friends group. (For full disclosure, as the co-secretary of the group, I was in attendance.)
After the meeting, the Friends of Carroll Park issued this statement:
"On Thursday, February 10th, at the request of Councilman Brad Lander, several officers of the Friends of Carroll Park/Committee to Improve Carroll Park, met with long time Carroll Gardens residents Kurt Andersen and Anne Kreamer so that they could present an idea to contribute to the vitality of Carroll Park. They had been inspired by a wonderful piazza they enjoyed during their travels and hoped that some elements might be introduced here. Since our park is already a piazza , we discussed ideas which might enhance the "piazza" atmosphere of the park. Everyone felt that the idea was worthy of consideration, as long as it did not interfere with the existing park uses.
At this point, we are exploring the idea of "Friday Evenings in Carroll Park" around the monument, perhaps with some cafe tables and chairs, a food or drink vendor, lights, and some entertainment. The committee has organized such activities many times in the twenty years we have volunteered at Carroll Park. We want to assure the community that no plans have been made and that discussions will continue with community notification and input. As a result of this discussion, we contacted the Parks department regarding the rumor we had heard about a food vendor awarded a contract to serve Carroll Park. We have confirmed that a contract had been signed several months ago and we may see a food cart in or around Carroll Park in the near future. The committee had nothing to do with this, we just wanted to know if it was true as it should be considered in our discussion. We will want to be sure that a vendor will only add to and not detract from our wonderful park.
We have always welcomed ideas from many sources and will continue to do so. Please join us for our monthly meetings which begin again in March - The first Thursday of each month in the park house at 7:30. The more ideas and help we have, the better Carroll Park becomes for all of us. You can also contact us at:firstname.lastname@example.org"
Calexico Comes To Carroll Park
The Friends Of Carroll Park have confirmed with the Park's Department that Calexico has been awarded a five year contract for food services at Carroll Park.
The three Vendley Brothers behind Calexico, who operate a restaurant at 122 Union Street as well as in Greenpoint, already hold a concession contract for Brooklyn Bridge Park. They also operate a food truck in Soho.
I am not sure how I feel about that myself. The decision was made independently of the community by the Parks Department, but we certainly should be involved in making sure that the food cart does not interfere in everyone's fun in Carroll Park.