A Brooklyn iconic is almost old enough to drink. The beloved Pencil Factory Par turns 20 years old on Thursday, December 9.

To celebrate, the bar will be hosting a vinyl night party, with more celebrations throughout the weekend. Like all nights, the party will continue until 4 a.m.

Pencil Factory opened in December 2001, and though it closed briefly during the pandemic (okay, it felt like forever for those of us waiting for their outdoor seating to reopen), the bar has stayed relevant and important to the community for two decades, and now more!

Back when the Pencil Factory opened its doors, The Village Voice (RIP) had this to say about the dive:

“THE PENCIL FACTORY (142 Franklin Street, Brooklyn) isn’t housed in an old pencil factory, but it does sit across the street from one, and that’s where the industrial similarities end: With wide-plank floors, exposed-brick walls, a stamped-tin ceiling, and beautiful apothecary-like cabinetry behind the bar, it’s more pub than grub. And one suspects the food co-op members that congregate here for their nightly microbrew fix (there are 10 good beers on tap) prefer it that way. “In hindsight, the name’s a little pretentious,” explained one of the owners, after perfectly pouring our pints of Guinness ($4). Her affectionate habit of asking “your pleasure” underscored her easygoing nature. So we inquired about the “Miltonian Social Club” sign in back, and got an interesting lesson in local Greenpoint history: Before going into decline in the 1960s, the neighborhood had several bars on every block serving the large longshoreman population. Apparently the Pencil Factory used to be known as the Miltonian Social Club. She paused. “Maybe we should have called it that.”


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