The Former St. Elias Church, the iconic 1870 landmark brick building at 145 Kent Street, is going to be a monster single-family home if developers have their way. The church has been sitting vacant for more than a decade. In 2007, Hirsch Enterprises, a company specializing in church conversions, purchased the property for $3.5 million, hoping to cash in on the red-hot local property market, but it has yet to see a return on its investment.
The former Russian-Catholic Rite church offers a huge interior covering 13, 800 square feet, but the property has proven difficult to develop and sell for a number of reasons. The church is landmarked and any development that alters the gorgeous façade must be approved by the landmarks commission. Did we also mention the $7.1 million price tag, which might inhibit all but wealthy buyers? Continue reading →
One of Greenpoint’s oldest buildings, the Episcopal Church of the Ascension (127 Kent St.), although beautiful, does not feel as if it belongs in Greenpoint. It feels more like a church from North London transported across the Atlantic and placed on Kent Street. It is also not hard to imagine the structure in some quaint English country town.
The British feel to the building is not an accident, as it was designed by Englishman Henry C. Dudley just at the end of the Civil War and dedicated in 1866. Dudley, a major American ecclesiastical architect who built in the English Gothic Revival style, designed a few churches so lovely that they were placed on the National Register of Historic Places. Although Dudley built a number of American churches, Ascension is one of only four remaining Dudley churches in New York City and the only one in Brooklyn. Dudley is most famous for his buildings in Nashville, Tennessee, where he and his partner Frank Wills designed the elegant Church of the Holy Trinity, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Continue reading →
Maman’s original SoHo cafe opened in early Fall 2014 without much fanfare. That is, until people tasted their Nutty Chocolate Chunk Cookie and that cookie alone should make you want to stop at their newest location at 80 Kent Street (between Franklin and West). Luckily, the southern-France-chic bakery has plenty of attention-worthy treats beyond the cookie to make it a welcome addition to our neighborhood! Continue reading →
Fellow Greenpointer Nathaniel Ziering tipped me off that Kickstarter is moving their headquarters from Manhattan to Greenpoint! The fast growing company provides crowd-sourced funding for creative projects, many of which have come from Greenpoint. In March, plans were approved for Kickstarter to renovate 58 Kent Street, a Landmarked, vacant building located between Franking & West streets. As you can see from the picture, this one could really use a tune-up! Kickstarter’s move to Greenpoint is a big vote of confidence for the neighborhood, will be great for the local economy and continue the momentum of businesses choosing Brooklyn as their new home. Continue reading →
Calm down. We aren’t talking about that kind of junk!
While on a stoop sale hunt down Kent St during the 165th Anniversary Block Party of Ascension, I met Mike, a Greenpointer who goes by the name Junk Toucher when he isn’t working his day job at MTV.
Mike had the best finds on the block. It wasn’t ordinary household junk. Mike searches long and hard and really knows what is good. He said he’s been collecting for over 20 years. He learned from the best of them. His parents, also Junk Touchers from Indiana, drop him off junk by the carload and he resells the wares on weekends at the Brooklyn Flea. He also trolls for goodies on trash night, but when I asked if he could take me on a tour he gave me the same look the mushrooms hunters give me when I asked them to show me where their secret mushrooms are, that, you can come but then I will have to kill you – look.
After being a good sport and posing with this antique dresser drawer pull moustache, he invited me upstairs to his Junk Toucher headquarters. Everywhere I looked there was something I wanted to touch.
“Its all for sale,” he said.
“What about that?” I asked pointing to a huge Audubon print I spotted in the corner (I’m obsessed with birds.)
“If you think that is cool, check these out,” Mike said and pulled out a stack of vintage prints illustrating bovine diseases. They were mildly disturbing, brightly colored and super obscure so I naturally wanted them all!
Visit the Junk Toucher at the Brooklyn Flea on Sundays, follow him on twitter or email him: mikekuharic (at) gmail.com
It was a busy weekend in Greenpoint. The Fowler ArtsOne Year show was a great start on Friday night. The artwork was impressive for a mixed group show, which doesn’t surprise me because of the many talented artists who have studios there. Plus the raffle extravaganza, with over 20 prizes generously donated from local shops and restaurants made the night a lot of fun! I can’t wait to blow my $2o Word gift certificate!
These lovely ladies were holding down the Kent St block party on Saturday, which was stoop sale and kids running in street like lunatics central.
On Saturday night Project Collective had an art and music bash to raise funds for the Brooklyn High School of the Arts. Any party on a perfect evening at The End is amazing because the killer views from the roof deck are spectacular.
I usually don’t like to rush the weekends but I couldn’t wait for Sunday when The Richardson had its Templeton Rye event. For $6 you got a Rye Cocktail plus a Pulled Pork Sammie from Edan Farms prepared by Tom from The Meat Hook. While I was shoving my second sandwich in my mouth (that’s 2 cocktails and 2 sandwiches for $12!), Tom, the pulled pork genius, explained that he braised smoked pork butts overnight with bacon. I call this sandwich divine perfection. It was the best pork sandwich I have ever had and I eat pulled pork any chance I get. MORE PLEASE! Peter, one of our Greenpointers writers, was the champion after eating a whopping three! Go Peter!!!