News

Manhattan Avenue Petland Discounts Closing (3/19)

Greenpoints’ Petland Discounts (846 Manhattan Ave.) is shutting down on Tuesday, March 19th, along with the closure of Petland retail stores across New York state, Connecticut, and New Jersey.

The announcement of the closures came just a few days after the passing of Petland founder, Neil Padron, Newsday reports.

The Brentwood, Long Island-based company has 78 stores in the tri-state region (18 in Brooklyn) with over 360 employees and was founded approximately 54 years ago in 1965.

The Manhattan Avenue store had many items remaining as of Friday afternoon and the store is offering discounts on select items. Continue reading

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Recycle And Exchange at the Stop ‘N Swap in Williamsburg Saturday (3/16)

The environmentally focused non-profit organization GrowNYC is hosting a “Stop ‘N’ Swap” on Saturday, March 16th, at the Williamsburg Community Center (195 Graham Ave.) from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Attendees can bring their unwanted housewares and clothes (see below) to donate and exchange for other items; from GrowNYC:

Bring clean, reusable, portable items such as clothing, housewares, games, books, & toys that you no longer need, and take home something new-to-you, free! You don’t have to bring something to take something.

Please do NOT bring: furniture, large items, tube televisions, expired or open food, unsealed personal care products, medicine, dirty or ripped clothing, fabric scraps, incomplete toys and games, non-working electronics, magazines, or sharp objects.

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Anchor Mistaken for Sea Mine Discovered in Newtown Creek

Metropolitan Avenue Bridge over Newtown Creek (courtesy of Jim Henderson)

A homemade anchor that was first reported to be a sea mine was discovered in Newtown Creek on Friday afternoon causing street closures, NBCNY reports. Sea mines are bombs used to sink and destroy ships and submarines; to prevent injuries, surrounding streets including the Metropolitan Avenue Bridge were shut down during the two-hour investigation.

Sea mines (courtesy of Andre Kaur)

FDNY was notified of a possible explosive device in Newtown Creek near Grand Street on Friday around 1 p.m. and a bomb containment squad was dispatched to the scene, according to NBCNY. Continue reading

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Anti-Semitic Graffiti Found in Nassau Avenue G Subway

A Ruth Bader Ginsburg poster was vandalized in Greenpoint on Tuesday inside the Nassau Avenue G subway station with the words “Die Jew Bitch” along with a drawing of a swastika.

The hate graffiti quickly drew condemnation from Mayor de Blasio who is asking for public assistance in identifying the person responsible:

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Emergency Blood Drive This Sunday (3/17)

An emergency blood drive is being organized by the North Brooklyn Chamber to help the NY Blood Center meet the needs of their patients during an ongoing shortage. The blood drive takes place Sunday, March 17, at Our Lady of Mt Carmel Church, (275 N. 8th St.) from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.; donors can signup for an appointment here if they can’t make it this Sunday.

The NY Blood Center released a statement explaining that donations have lagged this winter:

Four weeks ago, the New York Blood Center announced a blood emergency because donations had been lagging through the month of January. O- and B- inventories have not recovered. O- is the most needed blood type, transfusable to all other blood types and most urgently needed.
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Second L Train Open House is Wednesday (3/13) in Williamsburg

(Courtesy of Salim Virji/Flickr)

The MTA is hosting its second L train open house tomorrow (3/13) at the Williamsburg Northside School (299 N. 7th St.) from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Two additional L train open house sessions are scheduled for Tuesday, March 19: Grand Street Campus High School, (850 Grand St.), and on Monday, April 8: (14th St. Y), 344 E 14 St.

The current L train reconstruction plan is thin on finalized details, but a night and weekend repair schedule beginning April 26th where the L train runs in 20-minute increments between Manhattan and Brooklyn is expected. To help mitigate the problem, the MTA would like L train commuters to reconsider their station: Continue reading

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Brooklyn Community Board 1’s Monthly Meeting is Tonight (3/12)

The monthly Brooklyn Community Board 1 meeting is tonight (3/12) at the Swinging 60s Senior Citizens Center (211 Ainslie St.) from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. The meeting will also be live-streamed and the agenda is available here:

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The Williamsburg Roots of the Adler Acting Dynasty

 

Stella Adler (Courtesy of PBS)

American theater and film acting owes a huge debt to Stella Adler who is perhaps the most influential teacher of the dramatic method in American theater history. Adler’s method went on to dominate American acting for more than half-a-century and is still the dominant acting method now. The roots of Adler’s success in teaching acting go back to her mother Sara Adler who founded The Novelty Yiddish Theater that once packed in audiences at 778 Driggs Avenue.

Those of you who know local history well might be familiar with 778 Driggs Avenue. It is the same building where Detective Frank Serpico was shot and nearly killed in the 1960s. Before the building was converted into an apartment house it was an entertainment venue for the huge Yiddish speaking community that called Williamsburg home.

The former building at 778 Driggs Avenue (via cinematreasures.org)

The Adlers were the royalty of the Yiddish theater. Sara Adler was born in the Russian Empire in 1853 and became a star of the Yiddish theater there until Yiddish performances were banned in 1883. She and her husband left for New York where they continued to act in the Yiddish theater. Sara divorced her first husband and re-married famous actor Jacob Adler in 1891 and they had six children. Continue reading

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NYPD to Host Community Forum Against Hate (3/14)

The NYPD Patrol Borough Brooklyn North is hosting a community forum and discussion on hate crimes and how residents can work together to stop the noted increase in hate crimes over the past year. The forum will take place on Thursday, March 4, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at 179 Wilson Ave. in Brooklyn; RSVP at [email protected]

NYC experienced a 40 percent increase in hate crimes so far this year; 66 hate crimes in 2019 compared to 47 during the same period in 2018, with 64 percent categorized as anti-semitic, NBC reports.

Greenpointers recently reported on the string of local hate graffiti, a Manhattan Avenue-addressed hate letter, and vandalism at the Chabad of Bushwick.

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West Street Brownfield to Undergo Environmental Cleanup

The cleanup site (courtesy of DEC)

The environmental cleanup of toxins at part of the former American Manufacturing Company/Greenpoint Terminal site is slated to begin this month under the New York State Dept. of Environmental Conservation’s Brownfield Cleanup Program.

Remediation at 47- 53 West St. and 2 – 24 Oak St. will last approximately five months and includes excavation of historic fill, backfilling and construction and maintenance of an “impervious cover (e.g., concrete) or two feet of clean crushed stone,” according to the DEC fact sheet. A community air monitoring plan will also be implemented during the cleanup.

Some site history from the DEC:

The site is 3.98-acres and is bordered on the west by the East River, on the south by Former Consolidated Freightways (BCP Site No. C224191), on the east by West Street, and on the north by Noble Street. It is currently used for storage of heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment, granite, and flatbed trucks. The site was previously occupied by five separate buildings that were demolished by a fire in 2006. The only remaining structure is an approximately 1,400-square-foot concrete silo, which will remain in place after RAWP implementation. Historically, the site was used as a shipyard, a manufacturing facility, a mill, and the Greenpoint Terminal Corporation facility.

Rendering of 11-41 West St.

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