News

Greenpoint’s Natural Greenery Inspires Conservation-Minded Butterfly Perfume

Butterfly Set via Euphorium Brooklyn
Butterfly Set via Euphorium Brooklyn

Greenpoint sports a lot of green. From McCarren Park to the G train, our slice of north Brooklyn is colorful. In fact, Greenpoint’s natural greenery has inspired Euphorium Brooklyn’s newest fragrance, Butterfly. Ten years ago, when olfactory artist and perfumer Stephen Dirkes moved into a loft on Commercial Street, he noticed that the weeds and wild flora growing on the banks of the Newtown Creek supported something stunning: the annual Monarch Butterfly migration between Canada and Mexico. Each year, the butterflies descend on the northern reaches of Greenpoint, heralding summer and bringing a spectacular natural grace to the industrial waterfront.

Stephen notes that while Newtown Creek’s wild plant life might be “a peculiar starting point to develop a fragrance palette, butterflies have done a remarkable job of curating a wide range of fragrant floral, mint, grass, & herbaceous notes for a perfumer to work with.”

And the fine fragrance world is all aflutter over Butterfly. Reviews call it “bright, clear and sparkling…unearthly and ethereal” and mark it as the go-to scent of the summer. But, Butterfly didn’t begin as a fragrance. Instead, it started as a local conservation effort.

When Greenpoint’s zoning laws changed, new development began to spring up on the water’s edge, where plants once grew undisturbed. Suddenly, the Monarch’s migratory path faced peril, and Stephen began researching butterfly gardens as a way to help sustain the natural habitat. Now, Stephen’s made it possible for anyone to be an armchair conservationist! Continue reading

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Community Call: Help Hosh Yoga Stay in Greenpoint!

Rooftop Yoga by Hosh at the Greenpointers Spring Market

Greenpointers, join us in taking action for our wonderful friends and community pillars at Hosh Yoga. This studio has been a staple of our neighborhood since 2009. And now, the new management company that maintains Hosh Yoga’s space has increased their rent to more than double. Hosh Yoga needs our help to raise funds to move to a new space where they can continue to support our awesome community.

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The Next Greenpoint Clean Up Day is This Weekend (8/12)!

Greenpoint Clean Up Day

Join the Greenpoint Chamber and Neighbors Allied for Good Growth for the third Curb Your Litter: Greenpoint clean-up day of 2017. This time, they’re partnering with the Newtown Creek Alliance to pay special attention to curbing the litter that enters into our waterways.

They will pick up street litter in Northeast Greenpoint (east of McGuinness Boulevard and north of Norman Avenue). As always, all volunteers will get a free lunch as a thank you for their efforts.

Greenpoint Clean Up Day
Saturday, August 12 | 10am-12pm
Meet at Broadway Stages, 203 Diamond Street.
RSVP and more details on Eventbrite

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FREE Rain Barrels From the DEP and GrowNYC!

Free rain barrels Open Space Alliance
photo via Open Space Alliance

Via the Open Space Alliance:

The Department of Environmental Protection and GrowNYC held a successful rain barrel giveaway last weekend at the McCarren Demonstration Garden on Leonard Street. Two dozen barrels remain, and they can help you capture many $$’s worth of rainwater which can be used to water plants or for other household tasks. Installation is easy and you will be helping prevent harmful combined sewer overflow to our rivers by reducing runoff!

DEP’s Rain Barrel Giveaway Program is part of New York City’s Green Infrastructure Plan that aims to capture stormwater before it can ever enter the sewer system and thereby reduce combined sewer overflows into local waterways. DEP has committed to invest $2.4 billion in green infrastructure projects as well as other source controls, such as rain barrels, to significantly reduce combined sewer overflows by 2030. Read more about the program here.

Email Council Member Levin’s community liaison, Benjamin Solotaire, at [email protected] to claim your barrel.

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Sharp Studio is Greenpoint’s Speakeasy of Hair Salons

Sharp Studio greets customers with a glass of wine (photo: Julia Moak)

Tucked away among artists and creatives in the historic Pencil Factory building, Sharp Studio (61 Greenpoint Ave) is where Alex Ruano shapes, styles, and colors with his primary medium – hair. “I love doing men’s haircuts as much as women’s,” says Alex. “So I found a raw space that reminded me of old Soho, old New York and I wanted to design a space that isn’t overly feminine or masculine. It’s very neutral and comfortable. You feel like you’re going to a friend’s house, not a hair salon.”

After weaving through the ground level hall to Studio 107, you walk through black grand double doors to be met by a chic industrial interior with plush leather chairs, blankets, modern fireplace, and a study. Alex greets you with a glass of wine before he begins.

Plush leather chairs, fireplace, blankets, and cute dogs in Sharp Studio (photo: Julia Moak)

I went to Sharp Studio for a cut and color. “I want to do something drastic,” I told Alex but I wasn’t sure exactly what. After talking through what style I like, what goes with my face shape, and what would take the least amount of maintenance, we decided on a mid-length ash blond color. Continue reading

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Have Your Voice Heard With Participatory Budgeting

Real Money, Real Power: Participatory Budgeting from PBP on Vimeo.

Cycle 7 of NYC’s Participatory Budgeting initiative has begun! And Council Member Stephen Levin is riding high after Cycle 6’s success in District 33. “Participatory Budgeting is a democratic process in which community members directly decide how to spend part of a public budget.” That is, you directly decide which of the proposed projects you feel should be funded and the popular vote wins. Projects are funded until the available money runs out. That funding comes directly from our district’s “discretionary funds” budget. Council Member Levin put aside $1.5 million for us last cycle and he’s doing it again this time.

Community members meet with District 33 Participatory Budgeting Coordinator Benjamin Solotaire last year.

Earlier this year, 3,789 people voted on which projects submitted by the community they would like funded. The winning projects include bus clocks with live, up-to-date arrival times at 12 stops along the B62/B32 bus routes; a STEAM Lab for Samuel Dupont Elementary School/P.S. 31 (75 Meserole St); and upgraded electrical wiring at Monitor School/P.S. 110 (124 Monitor St). With Cycle 7 ready to begin, there are a few ways to get involved. One is to submit your project idea–here are some winning ideas from other districts (26, 34, 35, 36, and 39). It’s an opportunity to get creative and really think outside of the box. What would make our community better for everyone? To begin that process, you can email District 33’s Participatory Budgeting Director Benjamin Solotaire ([email protected]). Or you can show up at 6:30pm tonight for the first Participatory Budgeting meeting at our district office, 410 Atlantic Avenue. Later on this year there will be opportunities to present your project to the Participatory Budgeting Committee with the top projects being voted on next spring. Here’s your chance to make a difference in the District 33 community.

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Mockingbirds Attack in Transmitter, Robbers Impersonate ICE, Literary Playlists—The Hook-Up 7/31

Sunset at The Lot Radio. Photo: Megan Penmann
Sunset at The Lot Radio. Photo: Megan Penmann

Word on the street is that there’s a dangerous crew of mockingbirds hanging out in Transmitter Park, and boy are they ready to start shit. One reader tells us, “I was running through there the other day and one of them swooped down and started pulling at my ponytail. When I tried to keep running, it followed be and started yanking at it again.” Apparently, it is nesting season for the birds and the brutal attacks should stop once the birds’ babies are able to leave the nest. This has been happening for years, and seemingly is just wildlife being rightfully pissed off that we’re invading their turf.

Japan-o-philes and lovers of designy home goods rejoice—North Brooklyn is getting a MUJI!

Greenpointer and programmer Kate Ray created playlists, for books.

A Fox News host was doused with water at Union Pool. Continue reading

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Ch-ch-changes (to the McGolrick Park Dog Run), Re-opening Soon!

The refurbished McGolrick Park dog run, almost ready to re-open. Photo: Stephanie Valente
The refurbished McGolrick Park dog run, almost ready to re-open. Photo: Stephanie Valente

A quick walk along the southwest corner of McGolrick Park in the last few weeks reveals it has been getting something of a facelift.

At some point in early July, a sign appeared on the fencing outside of the McGolrick Park dog run, announcing renovation and that the run would be closed from July 12th – Aug. 1st. It came as somewhat of a surprise to the dog owners who frequented the park. Soon, enough secondhand information (and in some cases third and fourth) began to filter its way down from parks department employees; there would be a transition from dirt to gravel, that the trees would be preserved, and there would be a pavilion to provide shade for owners.

The talk, coupled with the sign, elicited a chorus of mixed replies: some owners praised the idea of gravel, noting it would clean their dog’s paws and possibly help with the endless amounts of broken glass that seemed to rise, Poltergeist-like, out of the mud after every heavy rain. Others were more wary, saying the mulched and dirt-y run provided pets a little relief from the concrete of the city, and the switch to gravel would take that cushioning away. Also, there was speculation about dust—an oft-heard complaint about the newer dog runs in Cooper Park and Bushwick Inlet. Continue reading

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The Karcher is Supporting Trans Rights by Offering Non-Gendered Haircuts

The Karcher - non-gendered haircuts
Via Instagram

Nackie Karcher and Madeline Jacobs, who are the Owner and Manager of local salon The Karcher (72 Greenpoint Avenue) have been talking about showing their support for women as well as the LGBTQ community for several months. “Since November and the election we’d been thinking about what can we do. We had pre-printed postcards for people to write their representatives sitting up at the desk for a while. We closed the day of the women’s march. And we’ve been thinking about ways we can use the space, for having community engagement. Being a non-straight-identified person myself… what can we do to make people feel accepted?” Madeline says.

Yesterday, the salon announced via its Instagram account that they would be offering Non-Gendered haircuts, stating, “We now offer a Non-Gendered Cut service option when booking on our website. We recognize that not everyone fits the commonly used gender binary service options and we want to make everyone feel welcome in our salon.” It was no coincidence that earlier in the day, President Trump tweeted, “After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military. Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail. Thank you.” On its Instagram post, the salon continued, “It’s a small action, but in light of today’s attack, we want to #resist how we can. You are welcome here. #transrightsarehumanrights”. Continue reading

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McCarren Park’s Insta-Famous Hipster Hawk

The McCarren Park hawk, photo by McCarren Hawk
The McCarren Park hawk, image via McCarren Hawk’s Instagram, photo by keenkenzie

If you’re like many of us, you’ve probably seen a hip-looking hawk roaming about McCarren Park. Whether he’s sunbathing on a Pendleton blanket with a Turkey’s Nest Margarita or simply strutting around the farmers’ market sporting his newest pair of Raybans, this hawk is LIT. And how he has an Instagram account. Check it.

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