"Is it not cruel to let our city die by degrees, stripped of all her proud monuments, until there will be nothing left of all her history and beauty to inspire our children? If they are not inspired by the past of our city, where will they find the strength to fight for her future?" Jacqueline Kennedy

Friday, November 15, 2019

Voter Registration Event To Be Held In Carroll Gardens This Sunday

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Did you just move to the area or did you just have your 18th birthday? Were you planning on changing your party affiliation to be able to vote in the New York primary? 
Several local residents are organizing a voter registration drive and will set up a table at the corner of Smith and President Streets on Sunday, November 17 from 10 to 2 pm.
Please spread the information and let us register more people to VOTE!





Thursday, November 14, 2019

RPT Physical Therapy Moving From 335 Court Street To 400 Court Street In Carroll Gardens

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Listing for 335 Court Street on Douglas Elliman

A few days ago, friend and PMFA reader Phil reached out to us to ask if R.P.T. (Raimondi Physical Therapy) at 335 Court Street was closing since the business' awning had been removed recently.
There is also a 'For Rent' sign displayed in its window.

Luckily, we can report that as of December 1, 2019,  R.T.P., which opened in Carroll Gardens in 2000, is just moving two blocks further to 400 Court Street, a space recently vacated by a dry cleaner.

We got the good news from Doctor Miroslaw (Mike) Polanski, DC CACCP at Families First Chiropractic at 476 Court Street, who told us that he refers a lot of his own clients to R.T.P. He himself has used their services in the past.
"They saved me from having knee surgery twice" Dr. Mike told us. "I highly recommend them."

R.P.T.'s current location at 335 Court Street is being offered for rent by Douglas Elliman for $7,000 a month.  From the listing:
"335 Court Street is located on a prime north Carroll Gardens location only 2 blocks from the Carroll Street subway. This mixed use building with wide front glass window to street is approximately 1500sqft with additional significant storage in basement. Outstanding for ANY reasonable use, Retail ,Restaurant or Office; the location is attractive and puts you in the heart of Court Street a vibrant downtown residential community ready for an exciting new business. The Open floorplan creates an adaptable usage with an owner ready to assist you . Call or email for additional information and/or to schedule an appointment. Concessions may be offered to a business the owner deems capable of a long term relationship."

Now that R.P.T's awning has been removed, the old metal sign of a previous business that once occupied both #335 and #337 Court Street has become visible again.  Aiello's Food Store, was a large delicatessen, that had belonged to an Italian family. By the early 1980's, the business had been taken over by a Russian couple, who did not have the best people skills and ended up running the business into the ground.
In the photo below, one can also detect the former Rainbow Green Market and Renaissance Pharmacy, which was run by two lovely ladies.
Who remembers Aiello's, Rainbow and Renaissance? 


A photo of the former Aiello's Food Store at 335 Court Street in the 1980's


Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Cerddorion Vocal Ensemble To Perform At St.Paul's Episcopal Church In Carroll Gardens This Friday


In the past few years, St. Paul's Episcopal Church at 199 Carroll Street here in Carroll Gardens has distinguished itself as a wonderful music venue. Coming up in its line-up is Cerddorion Vocal Ensemble this Friday night, November 15, 2019 at 8pm. Please see the information below and spread the word.

From Cerddorion:
"We begin our year of celebration with best-loved selections from Cerddorion’s entire repertoire—chosen by YOU, our cherished audience. Based on audience feedback through the years, we’ve put together a gorgeous concert featuring works by Josquin, Monteverdi, Brahms, Britten, and others."

Tickets are $25 online, $30 at the door. To purchase tickets and for more information, click here.

'We Remember': A Moving Veterans Day 2019 Ceremony In Carroll Park

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Friend of Carroll Park's Bruce McDonald
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Assemblywoman JoAnne Simon, Jerry Armer, Community Affairs, 76 Pct. Community Affairs, PO Joe Gonzalez, 76 Pct. Community Affairs Det. Vincent Marrone and Councilmember Brad Lander
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Councilmember Brad Lander
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Carol Rembert with a photo of her husband, who served in Vietnam
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The Veterans Day Ceremony in Carroll Park yesterday was a wonderful way for the Carroll Gardens community to remember and honor those who have served in the military.  It was deeply moving and especially wonderful to see so many young children involved in the ceremony as they listened attentively to the speeches of some of our neighborhood veterans.

As in years past, the event was organized by the Court Street and Smith Street Business Associations and Friends of Carroll Park.

Bruce McDonald of Friends of Carroll Park served as master of ceremony. He included some sobering statistics about United States veterans in his speech.
- According to the nonprofit group Feed Our Vets, more than 130,000 Veterans are homeless and hungry on any given night in America. One in three homeless people in America is a U.S. Military Veteran. And nearly four million Veterans and their families don’t have enough to eat during the year. [https://feedourvets.org/about-fov]

- Nearly 1.5 million veterans live in households that completely rely on SNAP benefits, including 23,000 active duty service members. The current administration’s federal budget proposed cutting $200 billion from SNAP, which could affect benefits for 400,000 veterans. [https://www.moveforhunger.org/why-are-so-many-veterans-food-insecure/]

- More than half of children in Pentagon-run schools qualify for free or reduced-price lunch — indicating their families are struggling to provide food, according to the Department of Defense. [https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2017/10/09/why-so-many-veterans-go-hungry-and-the-vas-new-plan-to-fix-it/]

- The Federal Government attempted to cut food stamp programs three times in the past year [https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/04/us/politics/trump-food-stamp-cuts.html]

- 1.2 million people in New York City face hunger every year, including one in five children [https://www.cityharvest.org/facts-about-hunger/]

We should all remember these statistics, especially going into the holiday season. Friends of Carroll Park will be collecting goods for its yearly City Harvest holiday food drive every Saturday in December at the Robert Acito park house. Please help generously by contributing canned goods.

  

Friday, November 08, 2019

Let's Honor Our Veterans At The Carroll Park Remembrance Ceremony 2019

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As in years past, the Court Street and Smith Street Business Associations and Friends of Carroll Park will be hosting a Veterans Day Remembrance Ceremony in Carroll Park this coming Monday, November 11, 2019 at 11 AM sharp in front of the Word War 1 Memorial.

Now, it seems more important than ever to come together as a community, to learn from the past, and to honor the service and sacrifice of our Veterans.

The ceremony is always deeply moving, so bring the kids and teach them a bit about the significance of this national Holiday. And perhaps, take the opportunity to introduce them to one of our neighborhood veterans in attendance.
The ceremony will be followed by a reception with light refreshments.

Looking For Witnesses: Local Journalist Investigating Halloween Incident On Court Street Involving the 76th Precinct And A Group Of Teenagers From Red Hook

Photo credit: Sara Pekow

Eric Umansky, a deputy managing editor of ProPublica who lives in the neighborhood, is reaching out to the Cobble Hill/Carroll Gardens community for information related to an incident on Halloween night that involved a group of teens from Red Hook. The teens were followed and then swarmed by uniformed and undercover cops, taken to the 76th Precinct in handcuffs, before being released without charges. 

Umanksy wrote to us:
'On Halloween night, my family saw police converge on a group of black teenage boys in Cobble Hill. My wife saw an unmarked NYPD car going the wrong way hit one of the boys. The police say that didn’t happen. They say, “An unknown male who had fled the scene ran across the hood of a stationary police car.”

Three other boys— age 12, 14, and 15—were then arrested. Police said they fit the description of people who had punched someone and stolen a cellphone.

I am eager to find out more. I can be reached via Messenger, 917-687-8406, or eric.umansky@propublica.org. I'm happy to not use names.'

The incident was witnessed by quite a few people. Apparently, the officers of the 76th Precinct were investigating the theft of a cell phone from another teenager in Carroll Park earlier in the evening.
There have been a few such robberies in the park since the beginning of the year that we know of, including this one in May.  This, in no way seems to justify the over-the-top response from the 76th Precinct on Halloween night.

More on the incident here and here.
If you witnessed the incident, please reach out to Eric.

Thursday, November 07, 2019

One Carroll Gardens Intersection, Two Mexican Food Trucks: Which One Is Better?

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Photos above of El Pollito #3 food truck parked in front of Rite Aid on Smith Street in Carroll Gardens most days and evenings.

Below, Buenos Nachos Amigos food truck parked nightly diagonally across the street near the F train station at President and Smith Street
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There really aren't too many food trucks serving the Carroll Gardens neighborhood in Brooklyn. That's why it came as a surprise that not one, but two Mexican trucks have recently been competing with each other at the intersection of  Smith Street and President Streets recently.

El Pollito #3 can be found most afternoons and evenings right in front of Rite Aid in front of 320 Smith Street right next to the Brooklyn bound F train station.

At night, it is joined by Buenos Nachos Amigos, which parks its truck at the corner diagonally across, next to the Manhattan bound F train station and in front of Leaf Medical at 325 Smith Street.
Their menus have some variation, but seem to basically offer the standard taco, burrito, torta and quesadilla combos.

We wonder if it makes sense for two Mexican food trucks to be in such proximity to each other.
So we have to ask: Is one better than the other? How do the prices compare? which one should we try first?

And pardon me for asking, but what happened to the Halal food truck pictured below, which was parked at the Rite Aid Smith Street spot for quite some time? Do you miss it?

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The Halal food truck which was parked on Smith Street near Rite Aid for a few years.

Monday, November 04, 2019

Friends Of Carroll Gardens Now Accepting Books For December Book Fair


If you have been thinking of thinning out your bookshelves, you may consider donating some of your books to Friends of Carroll Gardens Library's upcoming book sale on Saturday, December 7th, 2019.
Bring all good quality adult and children’s books to our neighborhood branch at 396 Clinton Street. Donate now and return to our local branch for the sale.

Friends of Carroll Gardens Library will also host a discussion on "Lady Liberty" on Saturday, November 16th from 3pm to 4 pm. author and local resident Joan Marans Dim will be in attendance with artist Antonio Masi. The book will be available for sale at the event.

Rite Aid In Carroll Gardens Installs Self Check Out Machines: Yay or Nay?

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Recently, we were made aware that the Rite Aid at 320 Smith Street in Carroll Gardens installed several self check-out machines at the front counter, leaving only two spots for cashier service.

Lines can be very long at this particular Rite Aid, especially in the evening, but we wonder if the trend towards self service is something we should support. After all, it means fewer jobs.

When we stopped by early last week, we asked one of the cashiers how the new machines were working out. She seemed frustrated and said that they malfunction often, forcing her to leave her register to help customers at the self check out. "I don't get paid to do both jobs at the same time" she told me.

Carroll Gardens' CVS on Court Street installed self check-out machines back in 2010. Back then, many local residents mentioned that they found them annoying.

What do you say? Do you welcome these machines? Is check-out faster at this Rite Aid now? Do you prefer to continue using the cashier? Do you think one should get a discount for using the machines since the store is saving on employees? (We do!)

Monday, October 28, 2019

"Enter If You Dare": Carroll Park Children's Halloween Celebration 2019 Was A Blast

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Halloween partiers waiting to begin the Halloween fun in Carroll Park
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Only the brave dared to enter Carroll Park's ball field this past Saturday
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Master of Ceremony: Friend of Carroll Park's Bruce McDonald,
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NYS Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon, NYC Council Speaker Corey Johnson and Councilmember Brad Lander at the festivities.
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Brooklyn Music School provided entertainment
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Mini Carroll Gardeners, their parents, and a few dogs too dressed up for some spooky fun in Carroll Park this past Saturday. Tiny princesses, baby sharks, unicorns, UPS drivers, soft serve ice cream truck drivers, and superheroes gathered in the Louis Valentino Ballfield for games, prizes, treats, arts and crafts. Music was performed by the amazing young talent at Brooklyn Music School.
It is safe to say that everyone had a blast.

NYS Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon, NYC Council Speaker Corey Johnson and Councilmember Brad Lander were on hand to distribute candy.

A big thank you goes out to Friends of Carroll Park's Bruce McDonald and Glenn Kelly, as well as all the other volunteers who organized and helped make this Children's Halloween Celebration a success.