recreation

Couples Use Newtown Creek As Dog Beach

Warning: These photos are horrifying.

Dog Swimming in Newtown Creek Off Newtown Creek Nature Center

When I came across these images on the Facebook feed of local environmental activist Laura Hofman, depicting a couple playing fetch with their dog off the Newtown Creek Nature Center, I was shocked and naturally disgusted. My first reaction was – Animal Abuse! Call the ASPCA.   Continue reading

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McGolrick Park Public Meeting Tonight (2/26) #OSOM

McGolrick Park is a hidden gem on the other side of McGuinness Blvd (#OSOM) but many local residents feel the park needs some major love, like updates to the playground and repair to the pathways. It doesn’t help that neighborhood punks have no respect, either; last year they set fire to benches and vandalized the statue.

Residents of #OSOM have come together and formed the McGolrick Park Neighborhood Alliance (like it!). Last week they pleaded with the Community Board 1, “requesting that fundraising efforts for the Park be made a major part of their next fiscal agenda with a particular focus on improving its playground,” as reported in the Greenpoint Gazette.

Show your support tonight by attending the CB1 “Parks & Waterfront” Committee Public Meeting at 6:30pm at Bushwick Inlet Park Facility, 86 Kent Ave.  Continue reading

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Immerse your Child’s Imagination at Tumbleweeds Art Camp

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Tumbleweeds Art Campers Showing Off Their Creations

The closest I ever got to art at summer camp was making friendship bracelets. Art camp didn’t exist when I was a kid – oh the things I would have made!

Give your child the opportunity to make and learn about REAL art this summer at Tumbleweeds Art Camp, taught by local teaching artist Hayley Youngs.

Located at the beautiful Awakening NY wellness center, Tumbleweeds Art Camp will run for 3 weeks this July 2014 for children 4-8 years old.

Each day campers work on structured art projects with one-on-one attentions, plus free art time to find their inner Picasso. Painting, sculpture, printmaking, fiber art and recycled art are just some examples of what your child will be getting into. Snack time, lunchtime and outdoor playtime will take place nearby at the McCarren Park Playground.

Don’t wait. Summer camps fill up quickly in North Brooklyn.

To register email Hayley at tumbleweedsartgroup@gmail.com

For more information, visit Tumbleweeds’ Website.

Schedule and detailed camp information follows: Continue reading

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Deals at Silk Road Cycles for Small Biz Saturday

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Our favorite bike shop Silk Road Cycles (76 Franklin St) is having a crazy sale for Small Business Saturday, which is this Saturday 11/30/13 through January 2014.

Silk Road is offering 15% of Bikes, gloves and winter hats, 10% off locks, 20% off lights and 25% off helmets!

Go get your bike stuff while the getting is so good!

Sponsored post courtesy of Silk Road Cycles.

 

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Bring Your Moves Greenpoint! McCarren Rink Opens Today! (11/15)

Doing an image search for “ice dancing” or “figure skating” makes me realize what honey badgers these people are. I won’t even mention the obvious. Sure they defy gravity and death with their moves, but those outfits make me wonder whether they would actually eat a cobra, fall asleep from the venom, then wake up and continue eating. They clearly don’t give a fuck.

Alls I am saying Greenpoint, is when you practice your camel spin you better be wearing some sequins…

And now you don’t need to go all the way to wherever there is an ice skating rink outside of Brooklyn because McCarren Park Rink opens today!

It will will be open through January, seven days per week from 11am-10pm. Admission is $8 for adults, $5 for seniors/student and $4 for kids. Skate rentals are $5

Ice dance or die.

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McCarren Park Ice-Skating Rink Opens Next Month (11/15)

Hold the phone. McCarren Park is getting an ice skating rink?!

It’s true! The McCarren Park Pool located on the Greenpoint-Williamsburg border will serve double duty, transforming into an ice rink during winter months. The rink will open on November 15 and will be the first of its kind in northern Brooklyn. Continue reading

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Park-Goers Rejoice! City Approves McCarren Park Expansion

©RachelCarbonell

In the latest construction news to hit North Brooklyn, the city approved a McCarren Park expansion that has been in the works since 2010. The plan would expand the park by 33,800 square feet, connecting the section of McCarren Park that holds the dog run and farmers market to the park’s southern end. The chunk of Union Ave. between Driggs Ave. and North 12 Street will be dug up and replaced with a fancy shmancy pedestrian plaza.

Naturally, residents are concerned with how traffic will be affected. Additionally, the expanded green area will remove 34 parking spaces. Gothamist reported, however, that these spaces may likely be recovered nearby.

While the the Parks Department works on securing funding for a permanent design, a temporary design is expected to be completed by summer 2014, giving us all something to look forward to just as the weather starts to turn cold.

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Cardboard Kayak Race & Gowanus Voyage: Celebrate City of Water Day! (7/20)

Part of why Greenpoint is so special is because of our waterfront location. And while many still make disgusted faces when thinking of getting anywhere near the Newtown Creek or The East River, others are paddling up our local waterways and even fishing off our piers.

We still have a long way to go before we can even safely touch the water, but with more awareness and recreation on our waterways, the faster they will be cleaned up for future generations to enjoy.

City of Water Day, which is taking place this Saturday July 20th is “a celebration of the potential of the waterfront,” and lots of events are going on nearby.

The main events take place between 10am – 4pm on Governors Island and Liberty State Park in NJ, but many neighborhoods are participating as well.

The North Brooklyn Boat Club is paddling to Governor’s Island, where lots of fun events like a cardboard kayak race (and overnight camping) are taking place! NBBC’s paddling spots are full, but you can meet them there by taking the ferry over to Governors Island.

You can also reserve a spot on a free boat tour around the city.

While nothing specifically is organized on Greenpoint’s waterfront, enjoy a picnic in Transmitter Park or at the Newtown Creek Nature Walk or watch the sunset on the India St Pier or the Manhattan Ave Streetend Park. We have lots of waterfront access in Greenpoint.

If you want to travel to the other end of Brooklyn, Greenpointers who brought you the Newtown Creek Armada along with the Gowanus Dredgers & Brooklyn Atlantis are taking on our sister super-fund waterway, The Gowanus Canal with the Gowanus Voyage, an interactive public boat pond on the Gowanus Canal in which you can explore above and below the surface of this historic waterway by piloting miniature remote control boats and aquatic robots equipped with video cameras and environmental sensors. Gowanus Voyage will take place on Saturday, July 20th, from 1pm-6pm at the 2nd Street boat launch near Bond Street in Brooklyn and is presented with the support of the Gowanus Dredgers Canoe Club. The rain date will be Sunday, July 21st.

Happy Water Day!

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July Bicycle Sale & Keg Fundraiser (7/13) at Silk Road Road Cycles

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The G Train is down for many weekends to come – so why not get on a bike?

Since you can’t rely on the subway, rediscover NYC on a bicycle.

Silk Road Cycles we will be offering $50 off any bicycle in stock for the month of July!

Also on Saturday July 13thCelebrate Summer at Silk Road Cycles!

We will be hosting a keg party fundraiser for Jill Smith, who will be competing in the Lake Placid Ironman to raise money for the Ironman Foundation.

11am – 7pm: come buy a bicycle, pump up your tires before your beach bound cruise, get that flat fixed!

8pm – 11 pm: drink brews in support of the Ironman Foundation; beer, video projection… $10+ suggested donation

Silk Road Cycles
76 Franklin St.
Brooklyn NY 11222
(corner of Franklin and Calyer)
718-389-2222
silkroadcycles (AT) gmail.com

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Sponsored post courtesy of Silk Road Cycles.

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We Survived! Birding Canoe Trip on Newtown Creek (Video)

Thanks to Newtown Creek Alliance and North Brooklyn Boat Club for organizing this fun canoe trip on the Newtown Creek. While nature in the way of lush forests and crystal clear running streams is far from the scenery along this industrial waterway, “nature has returned to the creek,” our guides explained, which is a good sign.

Among the many birds we spotted were cormorants, swallows, cardinals, a great egret, an entire flocks of cormorants, a catbird and a few geese who were demonstrating a curious behavior of swimming along the creek’s edge with their necks down low on the water.

We were very excited to also see blue crabs, oysters, small fish and jelly fish!

I won’t say it didn’t smell, in some parts worse than others. Mostly they were industrial gas and crude oil smells. There was a lot of garbage floating, capri sun containers, potato chips bags, tampons, and I won’t say that I didn’t cringe every time even the most minuscule drop splashed on my arm or even worse right near my lips.

When I asked Jens of NBBC what would be the protocol if someone fell in and swallowed a mouthful of water, he said he would recommend getting a Hepatitis test since the biggest pollutant on the creek nowadays is human excrement.

The most striking feature of the tour was when we canoed up to a partition between the creek and a combined sewage overflow, CSO area. That is where rainwater mixed with sewage from the treatment plant overflows after heavy rain. The water on our side of the partition was very clear, protected from – wait for it – “floatables.” On the other side, where an unknowing egret was hunting, was thick putrid sludge leading from the huge overflow pipe.

When we returned to the boat club dock I was never so excited to wash my hands, especially the spot of water that turned brown on my arm.

Canoeing up the creek is something that everyone should experience, at least once. If not for the birds – for the reality check. Modern conveniences like toilets and sanitation make us forget the impact we have on our own environment. While the creek is on its way to becoming a less vile place, it’s still the toilet of NYC, and we shouldn’t turn a blind eye to it, especially since it is becoming a viable place for our own native fauna.

Bonus: Laura Hoffman, locally famous environmental hero for Greenpoint, who was a plaintiff in a 2004 lawsuit against ExxonMobil for contamination of Greenpoint and the Newtown Creek that won $19million for an environmental projects fund, was on the same canoe trip! I was honored to finally meet her.

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