"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, May 17, 2019

This Sunday, Sacred Hearts And St.Stephen Church To Host Pet Adoption Event With Animal Care Centers Of NY

This coming Sunday.May 19 from 10 am to 2 pm, Sacred Hearts and St.Stephen Catholic Church at 125 Summit Place will host a pet adoption event
Animal Care Centers of NYC (ACC) will be at Sacred Hearts with great cats and dogs available for adoption! Animal Care Centers of NYC (ACC) adoptions include vaccinations, spay/neuter, a pre-registered microchip, an identification tag, a collar and a certificate for a free initial exam at a participating veterinarian.

If you have been thinking about opening your home and your heart to a cat or a dog, make sure to stop by.

This Saturday, Two Great Events In Carroll Gardens: The Carroll Park Fair And St. Paul's Church Flea Market

The very popular Carroll Park Fair is scheduled for tomorrow, Saturday, May 18th from 10 am to 5 pm. The weather will be beautiful, so come out and enjoy this fun neighborhood event.

All proceeds from the annual fair benefit Friends of Carroll Park, a non-profit organization that has been in existence for over 30 years. It is run entirely by volunteers. All funds received by the Committee are spent on the Park – mostly on trees and plants.

There are still some 10'x10' spots available for $35. If you would like one, call 917 574 0745 or email carrollparkfair@gmail.com with your name, phone number, and a brief description of what you'll be selling (i.e.; jewelry, records, household miscellany).

Also, tomorrow, Saturday, from 10 to 3, St. Paul's Episcopal Church at 199 Carroll Street is holding a Flea Market Browse for household goods, clothes, books, childrens' toys and more. 

So come out and meet your neighbors or make new friends while you browse at these two Carroll Gardens Events

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

'Bond Street Coffee And Goods' Opens At 365 Bond Street in Gowanus

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'Bond Street Coffee And Goods' just opened up in the commercial ground floor space of the Lightstone Building in Gowanus. The new café is probably a welcome addition for the residents of both 365 and 363 Bond Street.  The space has been sitting empty ever since the residential development was completed.
Bond Street Coffee and Goods serves espresso for $3 or cappuccino for $4, along with teas and cold beverages. Besides croissants, pains aux chocolat and muffins, it offers breakfast sandwiches as well as various lunch options like kale salad and chicken caprese sandwiches.
There seems to be a bit of confusion regarding the business' relation to d'Amico Coffee on Court Street.  I stopped by to talk to Frank D'Amico in his store a few days ago to inquire and he explained that he and Joanie have nothing to do with this Bond Street location. According to Frank, the new café was opened by his partner in the Red Hook Warehouse, where d'Amico Coffee is roasted. Nothing more.
Yet, when I asked the young lady at the café yesterday, she was eager to tell me that the business belonged to d'Amico Coffee's owner.
No matter, we imagine that the residents of the Lightstone buildings appreciate having the new business there.

Just across the street at 363 Bond Street, a wine and liquor store is applying for a New York State license, so there will be more commercial activity on the corner of First and Bond Streets soon.

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Monday, May 13, 2019

The Park Slope Singers Invite You To A Choir Concert at St. Paul's Episcopal Church In Carroll Gardens

Get ready for a tremendous afternoon of music here in Carroll Gardens on May 19, 2019 at 3pm, The Park Slope Singers will be performing "Sleep With Open Eyes" at St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Carroll Gardens. The setting and acoustics at St. Paul's are spectacular, so don't miss it.

"The Park Slope Singers’ spring concert will be an exciting musical kaleidoscope of contemporary music to engulf the audience in evocative soundscapes. Entitled “Sleep with Open Eyes,” the pieces truly enable the audience to listen and be immersed in the sounds and emotions surrounding us.
The concert will feature ten pieces, primarily from contemporary composers of the 20th and 21st century whose backgrounds span the globe from China to South Africa, and from Norway to the Middle East. We will feature two works by Grammy-winning American composers: Eric Whitacre and Mason Bates."


Sunday, May 19, 2019 at 3:00
St Paul's Church
199 Carroll Street (at Clinton Street), Brooklyn NY
Tickets at the door or HERE
General admission $15, Students/Seniors $10
Use this link to Invite a Friend.


Thursday, May 09, 2019

'My Gym' Children's Fitness Center Opening In Former FAAN Space On Smith Street

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The storefront at 209 Smith Street at Baltic Street has been empty for a long time  It was once the home of Faan, an Asian fusion restaurant, which occupied the space for ten years until 2011. It was replaced by the short-lived Burger on Smith, which closed in May 2013. Since then, it was occasionally used as a seasonal Halloween store.

The 5,600 SF storefront was marketed by Thor Equities, which seems to have finally found a new tenant: My Gym/Cobble Hill,  a children's fitness center that offers gymnastic classes, parties, camps and special events.  It will open this summer.

My Gym is a franchise with apparently 600+ locations worldwide.  From the website:
"My Gym was born out of our passion to teach children in a fun, physically engaging environment. We delighted in seeing children's eyes light up for all those incredible milestones, from the tentative first steps to tumbling down soft mats. Sharing the parents’ excitement at their children’s accomplishments was the high point of our day.

We knew from the start that, through fun and captivating activities, we could accomplish great things. Our goal: To create an environment where children feel loved and supported so their self-esteem and confidence can flourish. Now, more than 35 years later, we’re proud to say that all children of all abilities can succeed and thrive at My Gym."


This particular franchise places itself in Cobble Hill, thought this Smith Street location is more precisely in Boerum Hill. (Sorry, it's a pet peeve of mine when a new business does not seem to know what neighborhood it is moving into.)  We are also a bit confused by the '1/2 off first month's tuition forever' offer for Founding Members. What exactly does that mean?

I suppose we should be thankful for a new tenant for this space,  but we miss Faan! 

Monday, May 06, 2019

Group Of Teens Robbed In Carroll Park On Saturday Evening

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This past Saturday evening, a group of 15 year old neighborhood boys were sitting at one of the chess tables in Carroll Park shortly after 9 pm, when they were robbed by three slightly older teens.  The incident has been reported to the 76th Precinct, but we would like to make others aware of the incident so that it does not happen to others.

The mother of two of the boys who were robbed sent this description of the incident:
"It happened around 9:20pm - the boys were sitting at the chess tables talking after playing basketball when 3 kids - 2 black  and one light skinned either black or Hispanic, approached asking if they wanted to buy weed.  All three boys were wearing hoodies, the lead guy’s was maroon or red, other two were darker. One kid had a stud earring. 
The boys said they don’t smoke and one of their friends nervously laughed. The kid said they were making fun of him so he was going to make them pay. Said he had a gun in his bag and he wanted 2 phones and their money. Kid took the stuff then said he would kill them if they went to the police, that he was in the bloods and his boys would come after them. The boys drove around with cops looking for them afterwards and the cops found another group of kids these kids harassed but the other group said they chased them away.  "I’m very grateful our guys gave them their stuff and left"! 

When we went to the precinct, we met with a really lovely detective, Detective Francis, who used to do foot patrol in the park and could not believe there is so little police presence there now and that they no longer lock up the park at night.  She said it was more likely a group of punks who saw my guys and friends get nervous and decide to pounce. She said it's always best to walk away but that she doesn’t think they had a gun or were in gangs."

A few of the victims recognized the lead assailant and had played basketball with him in the park. He apparently graduated from 58 a few years before them.

The three robbers were with 2 girls who came by to check on them during the robbery. When one of the assailants said they were robbing the younger kids, the girls walked away and waited. 

Years ago, under former 76th Precinct Commander Cassidy, Carroll Park was closed at around 10 pm.  This cut down on quite a number of incidents, especially in the warmer season. Perhaps it is time to ask the precinct to start closing the gates at night again.

Please let your neighbors and kids know about this incident so that we can all stay alert..and safe.

Friday, May 03, 2019

Picture Of The Day: In Bloom

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The redbud trees are in bloom again.
There is nothing lovelier than Carroll Gardens in spring, don't you think?

Some Vendor Spots Still Available For The Upcoming Carroll Park Fair

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It's official! Spring has arrived in Carroll Park. With the arrival of warmer weather, Friends of Carroll Park , the all volunteer group taking care of our  beloved green oasis, has scheduled its popular Carroll Park Fair for Saturday, May 18th from 10 am to 5 pm.

Mark your calendar and come to shop for housewares, clothes, books, music, antiques, jewelry, furniture, tchotchkes, and everything else under the sun, meet neighbors and make new friends.

If you would like to be a vendor at the fair, there are still some spots available. Here is the deal:

Rent a patch of Carroll Park's Valentino ball field during this ever-popular annual market!
The cost for a 10' x 10' space is $35.
To reserve your spot, call 917 574 0745 or email carrollparkfair@gmail.com with your name, phone number, and a brief description of what you'll be selling (i.e.; jewelry, records, household miscellany).
Sorry, but food or drink sales are not allowed. Rental includes the space only, no amenities: vendors must bring their own tables and/or chairs.

All proceeds from the annual fair benefit Friends of Carroll Park, a non-profit organization that has been in existence for over 30 years. It is run entirely by volunteers. All funds received by the Committee are spent on the Park – mostly on trees and plants.

"Gowanus: A Look at Landmarks as Rezoning Looms": One Of The 2019 Jane's Walk Events Scheduled For This Sunday

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Brad Vogel of the Gowanus Landmarking Coalition
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The Municipal Art Society of New York is once again hosting a series of free, citizen-led walking tours around our city inspired by urban activist  Jane Jacobs.
Notable on the list of Jane's Walk for 2019 on Sunday, May 5th at 1 PM is a tour entitled  "Gowanus: A Look at Landmarks as Rezoning Looms" that is bound to be fascinating.

The walking tour is lead by my good friend Brad Vogel of the Gowanus Landmarking Coalition , who will explore the question: 'What will become of the distinctive buildings that make Gowanus......Gowanus' if New York City's ambitious up-zoning goes through?

From the Municipal Art Society's web site:
Gowanus: A Look at Landmarks as Rezoning Looms
Centered on the polluted Gowanus Canal, Brooklyn’s Gowanus neighborhood faces a potential city-led rezoning. The Gowanus Landmarking Coalition has pushed since 2017 for designation of a variety of landmarks in this quirky neighborhood BEFORE any rezoning arrives. Brad Vogel, a Gowanus resident, captain of the Gowanus Dredgers Canoe Club, and a Coalition founder, will lead the tour with a focus on landmarks in the proposed rezoning area.


The tour is free but you must preregister here. The meeting point is the Gowanus Souvenir Shop, 567 Union Street.


Thursday, May 02, 2019

Last, But Not Least, A Stop In Málaga, Spain

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View over the Mediterranean Sea
The port of Málaga
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The Cathedral of Málagua in the distance
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Just one of the many pedestrian streets
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The Museo Picasso in Málaga
The Palacio de Buenavista, which houses the Picasso Museum
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A bronze statue of Pablo Picasso, who was born in the corner house with green shutters across the street.It now houses the Picasso Foundation.
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Sunset over Málaga harbor

I only knew two things about Málaga, Spain, before we visited this city on the Mediterranean coast.
It was the birthplace of Pablo Picasso and also the native city of my wonderful friend Caro.
It was our last stop in Spain and Málaga proved to be a worthy end to a fabulous vacation.

Much larger than I had envisioned, there are some amazing museums and cultural centers here, from the Museo Carmen Thyssen Malaga to an outpost of the Pompidou Center, and of course the Picasso Museum, which is housed in the beautiful Palacio de Buenavista.

The commercial center of Málaga is closed to traffic and it is a treat to explore the shops and many restaurants at a leisurely pace, unencumbered by cars passing by. At night, it seems that everyone gathers here for wine and tapas. It is quite fun to hop from place to place sampling different foods, which we did.

We also ventured into the Mercado Central de Atarazanas, a covered market place that had some of the most amazing (and cheap) produce I have ever seen. And this being Spain, the selection of olives and olive oils was astounding.

The highlight by far was meeting Caro's mother, who invited us to a seaside restaurant a short bus ride from the center of town. Seafood in Málaga is extraordinary and it was a real treat to
spend an evening watching the sunset over the Mediterranean.

Two weeks was barely enough to explore the South of Spain, but we did see and learn so much. The country is beautiful and its people are incredibly welcoming and helpful. The food and wine are worth a trip on their own and compared to the rest of Europe, prices here are still very reasonable. Needless to say, we plan on returning back soon.

We are now back in Brooklyn, and will dive into our Carroll Gardens life as soon as we have unpacked and put our suitcases away.  Stay tuned. 

Thanks for coming along on this adventure,