Four of Wands Wellness Collective: Self-Care and Community

Four of Wands Wellness Collective Williamsburg Store Window
Four of Wands exterior; all photos via Four of Wands

Four of Wands Wellness Collective (349 Leonard Street) is a self-care studio in Williamsburg, where people can find different kinds of holistic treatments, classes, handmade gifts, and a community space. Owner and Licensed Massage Therapist Daru Oda wanted to create a space for  doing “what makes you happy. We forget to do things that are fun or to expand our minds. At Four of Wands, we can take care of ourselves for an hour.”

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Back-To-School Greencycle Swap This Saturday 9/17!

Greencycle Swap - back to school Sept 2016Cleaning out your closet with back to school? Bring everything over to Greencycle Swap! Bring some! Take some! One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Let’s recycle, reuse and reduce!

The next Greencycle “Back-to-School” Swap 
is happening this Saturday, September 17 at Greenpoint Public Library (107 Norman Ave.) from 11am-3pm.

They’ll be accepting:
Men’s, womens and children’s clothing, shoes, books, toys, bicycles, phones, household items and electronics. Electronics accepted until 2pm—cleaned, gently used and working items please. You don’t need to bring anything to take anything. However, out of consideration for others, they may limit folks to the greater of 1 bag or the number of bags that you have brought to donate to the swap.

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Clap Your Hands Say Yeah and Greenpoint Duo Babetown Rock Reopening of Brooklyn Bazaar

Last Friday night, the Brooklyn Bazaar was reincarnated in the former wedding venue/event space Polonaise Terrace at 150 Greenpoint Avenue. The Bazaar was forced to abandon their former location at 165 Banker Street in June of 2015 after being financially outmuscled by BMW, who took over their 23,000 square-foot warehouse. After being forced out, Bazaar owners Belvy Klein and Aaron Broudo set up the Riis Park Beach Bazaar on the Rockaway Peninsula in Queens, and started searching for a new location for the Brooklyn Bazaar.

They settled on Polonaise Terrace near the intersection of Greenpoint and Manhattan Avenues. The location is drastically different from their last but it affords the Bazaar a funky, cool, and slightly creepy “The Shining meets labyrinthine Polish funhouse” vibe. There are lots of nooks and crannies in the venue, with ping pong, putt putt, and karaoke downstairs, vendors and food (courtesy of The Brooklyn Star’s Joaquin Baca) on the first floor, and music upstairs.

Leibowitz and Ross perform as Babetown.

To kick things off for the big reopening last Friday night, the Bazaar did not disappoint, with a musical bill that included local Greenpoint husband-and-wife duo Babetown, Rockaway Beach rockers The Skells, and established indie band Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. Continue reading

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Neighbors Allied For Good Growth Seeking Fall Intern

NAG's Toxicity Map
NAG’s Toxicity Map

Civic-minded students! Local Greenpoint/Williamsburg community advocacy group Neighbors Allied For Good Growth is seeking a Fall intern! The intern will be assisting with outreach, communication, writing and more. NAG focuses on raising the quality of life in the neighborhood through supporting environmental, transportation and open space sustainability and improvement initiatives. The gig is flexible based on individual interests, and although it’s unpaid (with a small $45 per month transportation stipend) they can offer school credit. Via NAG: “Interns must be available 8 hours per week for the duration of the semester. This time will be split between NAG’s office in Williamsburg, offsite meetings, and virtual work. Much of the interns’ time might be spent remotely, depending on the project and the work agreement reached with the Community Environmental Organizer. Significant opportunities will also be available for interns to attend networking and training events.” The intern will also help create their 2016 NAG RAG. The dates of the Fall internship will be Sept 27 – December, as the school semester calendar permits.

There’s more info and the official job posting on Idealist.
Check out NAG on Facebook and on their site.

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Another Piece of Industrial Greenpoint Gone: The Pinquist Tool and Die Factory

Screen shot 2016-08-31 at 2.22.56 PM

Greenpoint was once known as “The American Birmingham” because, like the English industrial town, almost everything was manufactured here. Greenpoint has been manufacturing items for so long that many of the factories predate zoning laws intended to separate toxic factories and residential areas. No one was more aware of the tooth- and-jowl nature of Greenpoint manufacturing than the people of Clifford Place between Calyer Street and Meserole Avenue around the corner for the post office. Since 1947 the sounds and vibrations of stamping metal and rolling steel have resounded up and down the street weekdays from the Pinquist Tool and Die Factory. However, the din of clanking metal has ended and neighbors now wonder what will replace the old metal shop. The old Pinquist logo still sits above the building, a sad reminder of a faded past. Continue reading

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A History of Greenpoint in 25 Buildings: Bamonte’s Restaurant

Bamonte's Restaurant. Illustration by Kenzie Kline.
Illustration by Kenzie Kline

Bamonte’s Restaurant is not only the oldest restaurant in North Brooklyn; founded in 1900 by Italian immigrant Pasquale Bamonte, the restaurant claims to be the oldest Italian eatery in all of New York city. It was founded at a time when southern Greenpoint was a mecca for Italian immigrants. The restaurant has been run by the Bamonte family for four generations. It’s off the main drag, so you may have a hard time finding where the restaurant’s located—at 32 Withers Street—but it’s definitely worth the trip.
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Emily Gallagher’s Campaign: Echoes of Another Greenpoint Female Reformer?

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Emily Gallagher

Some friends and I were sitting out on the grass in Transmitter Park one warm June evening watching a film when we were approached by a young woman campaigning for Emily Gallagher, who was running for the position of Female District Leader of the Democratic Party. Most people, even people who follow politics closely, would not know there was even a Female District Leader, let alone what the job entailed. But I was familiar with the position because Peter McGuinness, the legendary Greenpoint Democratic Boss and the namesake for McGuinness Boulevard, owed his rise to power to his Female co- leader, Margaret Conlon.

A District Leader is an unpaid position in the local Democratic Party, representing the neighborhoods of Greenpoint, North and South Williamsburg on issues regarding judicial nominations and elections. At the end of World War I, McGuinness, had grown fed up with the inertia of local Democratic politicians, but he had never gone to high school and needed someone’s help to write letters to the editor criticizing the party establishment. He turned to Conlon, a poet as well as a skilled prose writer, who helped McGuinness write a series of highly provocative attacks on the corruption and inertia of the local political machine and the letters hit home. Thanks in large part to Conlon, she and McGuinness in a shocker were elected as local Democratic Party leaders and they served effectively for years, bringing a number of positive changes to our area and making history.
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29 Rooms Returns to North Brooklyn This Week

Hattie Stewart, "Art in the Dark" at 29 Rooms last year.
Hattie Stewart, “Art in the Dark” at 29 Rooms last year invited viewers to play in a day-glo pile of feathers and rock out to EDM.

If you went to Refinery29’s popup art show and totally Instagrammable 29 Rooms hosted inside a Greenpoint warehouse last year, you probably took at least 29 selfies. This weekend (Sept. 9–11) they’re hosting the event in Bushwick, and it promises to be bigger and better than last year, with a bit more brand involvement. But based on the way brands were integrated with last year’s event, it’ll still be a rad interactive fun house of style, culture, and technology. The exhibit features 29 fully art-directed rooms with each one decked out in a different visual theme.

Some of the rooms are designed by individual artists, others are taken over by various brands (including Perrier, Ulta, Papyrus, Google and Michael Kors), and some are collabs between artists and brands. Artist Baron Von FancyBroad City‘s Abbi Jacobson, singer Tinashe, actor Adrian Grenier, artistic director for Diesel Nicola Formichetti, RuPaul, makeup artist Ryan Burke, and interactive artist Daniel Rozin are all listed as collaborators. We’re psyched to see what they come up with. Continue reading

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Diving In: The Greatest Greenpoint Dives

Armed with $20, a healthy sense of adventure, and a tattered old Tom Waits t-shirt, Greenpointers writer Erik Keithley sets out on a weeklong tour of Greenpoint’s grungiest gems. Note that for the benefit of your billfold, Erik has made note of the cheapest and best beer available at each of these establishments at the time of his visit. You can have a beer at every one of these watering holes over the course of a week for a grand total of $14.75! 


R-Bar |451 Meeker Avenue | 718-486-6116
Best beer deal: Founders All Day IPA for $3

I noticed this bar shortly after moving to Greenpoint and was very intrigued because it shares a name with one of my favorite spots in New Orleans. Thankfully, it is remarkably similar to its barebones Crescent City counterpart. The bar features an austere but friendly interior with red walls, some scattered old trophies, a pool table, and a few booths up front by the electronic jukebox. I went in on a Tuesday night and was the only one there except for the owner Greg and his 12-year old son. The family-run business aspect of the place was quite obvious, as every time I went to pay for a beer the owner would have his son take my money and give me change in order to work on his math skills. Greg seemed like a really great guy and told me he even grills free food for customers on holidays such as Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter (he said he will be hosting a free Labor Day BBQ on Sunday, September 4). R-Bar’s happy hour deal is amazing, as almost every draft is $3 until 9 p.m every day of the week. The only beer that was excluded was a high-end German IPA (BraufactuM Progusta), but that still leaves you with eight other tap selections, including such winners as Founders All Day IPA, Gaffel Kölsch, and Brooklyn Lager. I shot some free pool and ended up getting in a conversation with the 12-year old kid about his favorite heavy metal drummers (Lars Ulrich) and vintage Mario Kart courses (Rainbow Road). This is a basic but friendly neighborhood bar where you can enjoy free pool on Tuesdays, a free jukebox on Wednesday nights, and quality $3 pints every day of the week. Considering you’re just over half a mile from the heart of Williamsburg, that is truly incredible. Continue reading

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Lake Street Owners Grace Us With New Bar Goldie’s

Goldie's Horseshoe Bar
Goldie’s golden bar. Photo by Graham Burns

If Elvis had a favorite Greenpoint bar it would be Goldie’s (195 Nassau Ave.). Tufted leather booths, opulent touches and a dark interior lit by candlelight before sunset, the bar is reminiscent of a 1960’s Vegas lounge. Portraits of Sammy Davis Jr. and Dolly Parton adorn charcoal walls in gold framed paintings imported from Tijuana. In a space that once occupied long standing Cafe Royal turned Cafe Edna, the black and white tiled floors remain, the owners faced the challenge of a layout that’s bisected by a residential staircase. The intrusion creates two separate spaces, creating a pool room near the front window, comfy booths along the entrance and standing room to casually lean into a nifty drink ledge along a wall. In the center of it all is a golden horseshoe bar that’s as enticing as Lady Luck. Continue reading

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