Brooklyn Boom Extends to Gowanus

Dec 26, 16 Brooklyn Boom Extends to Gowanus

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Once disdained as a go-to place in Brooklyn, Gowanus, found between Park Slope and Carroll Gardens, has been making a (positive) name for itself. Once known for its stinky canal and plethora of car repair shops, the area has been remaking itself into a fun place to visit, and maybe even live. Here are a few new fixtures in the constantly changing landscape of Gowanus, Brooklyn: Twig Terrariums: This must be a real rarity, if not unique. It is certainly brilliant. This shop offers easy-to-care-for terrariums; either custom-made or DIY with a kit. This partnership between two friends, Katy Maslow and Michelle Inciarrano, gets their greenery from local nurseries, and their fabulous glass bowls from boutique glass blowers across the country. Some of the glass globes are hand-blown. For those of us that enjoy being surrounded with greenery, but just don’t have the time to care for plants, a terrarium is a wonderful compromise between the joy of growing something and the care it requires. 287 Third Avenue, 718-488-8944, The Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club: Mimicking the great shuffleboard clubs of Miami Beachand the great cruise lines, this club will even let people under 55 years old play this fascinating game, made all the more interesting by the incredible drinks available from the bar. Playing shuffleboard brings out the “cruise-desire” in all of us, which is can be readily satisfied with the tropics-inspired cocktails the in-house mixologists concoct. All that drinking and shuffling can make a body hungry, but do not fear just because the establishment does not actually serve any food. Every day a new food-truck pulls up to the premises, making a visit to the Royal Palms even more of an incredible adventure. You can find Indian food one day, lobster rolls the next, and on and on. 514 Union Street, 347-223-4410, Pig Beach: What does a Brooklynite do in the middle of the winter when he is craving some good old barbecue? He heads on over to Pig Beach and...

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Former Brooklyn Borough President Sebastian Leone Dead at 91

Dec 01, 16 Former Brooklyn Borough President Sebastian Leone Dead at 91

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Sebastian Leone, known for his struggle to improve Brooklyn’s reputation during the 1970s, long before the borough’s recent renaissance, passed away on November 14 at the age of 91. His wife Helene Leone said that he had succumbed to the effects of pneumonia. Leone was the borough president for six years from 1970 until 1976. During those years Brooklyn was not the up and coming hot spot among the young professional crowd and celebrities. It was more like, as journalist McCandlish Phillips wrote in the New York Times: “a neglected stepchild of Manhattan.” Most accounts credit Leone with begin the first Brooklyn official to put up the famous “Welcome to Brooklyn” sign. In 2010 Leone told The Brooklyn Paper that: “In those days, you always had to be Brooklyn-positive. I used to say, ‘One out of every 80 people that live in America live in Brooklyn!’ If you consider people that were born here, worked here and have relatives here, then one out of 10 people have some affinity for Brooklyn!” Leone left his job as Borough president in 1976. A few months later, at the beginning of 1977, he became a State Supreme Court justice. He retired in 2001, and lived the remainder of his life in Bay Ridge. His wife, their son Matthew and two grandchildren survive...

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Brooklyn Bridge Repairs Running High

Nov 14, 16 Brooklyn Bridge Repairs Running High

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Back in 2010 the original estimated cost for the much needed repairs to the 133-year-old Brooklyn Bridge was put at about $508 million. In 2015 the bill was then set to reach about $600 million. Now New Yorkers can expect to pay in the vicinity of $811 million. That is an almost 60 percent increase over the original cost estimate. The steep increase in cost is blamed on “scope changes” and “unforeseen field conditions.” And not only will it be costlier to build than originally expected, the probable completion date has been moved back to April 2017. That is four years later than the original plan called for. “Big public projects take too long to complete and routinely run over budget,” said Maria Doulis, from the Citizens Budget Commission, a watchdog group. “The city has made attempts to be more transparent about this by posting information online, but it’s unclear what actions are being taken to evaluate and address the root causes.” New Yorkers will be footing 54 percent of the cost, while the federal government will pick up the rest of the tab. The Department of Transportation said the additional work will include steel repairs, painting of more areas of the bridge, and even fixing damage that was caused to protective shielding which occurred as a result of a barge...

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Brooklyn DA Thompson Dead from Cancer at Age 50

Oct 10, 16 Brooklyn DA Thompson Dead from Cancer at Age 50

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Only five days after announcing publicly that he was ill with colorectal cancer, Ken Thompson, Brooklyn District Attorney, is dead at age 50. He died at Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital surrounded by family members. Although diagnosed this past spring, he carried on with his duties until last week when he appointed his chief assistant, Eric Gonzalez, to head the office until he won his battle with cancer. “As a man of intense faith, I intend to fight and win the battle against this disease,” Thompson said. Thompson’s wife Lu-Shawn wrote on Facebook: “The world lost a great man. Rest in Peace to my husband.” said: “I am profoundly saddened. Ken was a dedicated public servant who embodied the highest principles of the law.” Thompson became the Brooklyn DA in January 2014 after beating the incumbent Charles Hynes, who had served as Brooklyn DA since 1990. It was the first time anyone had defeated a sitting Brooklyn DA since 1911. Thompson was also the first African-American in history to fill the job of Brooklyn’s chief prosecutor. Thompson was known for ordering his office to refrain from prosecuting low-level marijuana arrests. This was partly so he could dedicate more resources to violent crimes such as rape, gun crimes, and domestic violence. He also wanted to spare New York youth from “the burden of a criminal...

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Eamon Rockey Helping Celebrate 333 Years of Gaggenau

Sep 25, 16 Eamon Rockey Helping Celebrate 333 Years of Gaggenau

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New Yorkers looking for a great meal in a restaurant with a top-notch bar have discovered Betony. This high-end eatery offers a lot more than just exquisite food. General Manager Eamon Rockey, along with his team of mixologists, have taken the concept of restaurant bar to a whole new level. Until the advent of Rockey and his staff transformed Betony’s bar into an adventure in cocktails, the main purpose of a bar in a restaurant was to keep the customers happy until their tables were ready for them. Not so at Betony: here you find that many of your bar companions have come exclusively for the bar. And no wonder. The cocktails on hand, created by Eamon and his staff, are nothing if not fun. Original and amusing, wouldn’t you love to try a drink with the cognomen of Rifflin’ Dixie, The Socratic Oath, or Eat a Peach? The joy in creating these specialty drinks is shared by the bar tenders gladly with their customers. No question is too basic. On the contrary: the staff is ready to not only share their knowledge, but will pour samples of their creations, free, if you express even the slightest hint that you might want to have a taste of something you’ve never heard of before. The fun atmosphere, delicious drinks, and amazing food, which can also be ordered at the bar, is what keeps New Yorkers coming back. Eamon Rockey will be making an appearance at the exclusive pop-up Restaurant 1683 for two of the four days that Gaggenau will be celebrating its 333rd anniversary. From September 26 to 29, three Michelin star chef Daniel Humm, together with restaurateur Will Guidara, will be serving guests at a by-invitation-only sensory extravaganza. For those perhaps less foodie and clued in to the highest end of food production, Gaggenau is a German brand of food design and technology, whose history dates back to 1683.  On the program will be a multi-sensory experience which will present the history of Gaggenau...

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Brooklyn College Celebrates the Opening of the Haitian Studies Institute

Sep 05, 16 Brooklyn College Celebrates the Opening of the Haitian Studies Institute

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Scholars, politicians and lay-leaders were in attendance at the opening of the Haitian Studies Institute, now an integral part of the academic offerings at City University of New York’s Brooklyn College. The institute is billed as “a leading institute in the nation, contributing to the body of knowledge about Haitians and the Haitian Diaspora, and advancing the intellectual field of Haitian Studies through research, analysis of public policy, and scholarly practice impacting people of Haitian origin in New York State and other parts of the Haitian Diaspora.” Brooklyn College President Dr. Michelle J. Anderson introduced Jean Eddy Saint Paul as the founding director of CUNY-HIS during the proceedings, which took place on Wednesday at the Flatbush Avenue campus of Brooklyn College. “I am pleased to welcome scholar Jean Eddy Saint Paul to our community,” intoned Anderson, adding, “Brooklyn is home to the largest number of foreign-born Haitians in New York City, and the largest concentration of Haitian-owned businesses and community-based organizations in New York State. Dr. Saint Paul’s experience and knowledge will help him make the Haitian Studies Institute at Brooklyn College a global intellectual center.” Saint Paul is from Haiti and has written many scholarly articles and chapters, as well as two books, The Militias in Haiti: Sociology of Chimè and Tontons Macoutes, about Haiti and the Haitian diaspora. The realization of the dream of the HIS was in no small part due to the political support of Rodneyse Bichotte, Assemblywoman of the 42nd District of the New York State Assembly. Visibly moved during the ceremony was Peter Helder Bernard, the Consul General of the Republic of Haiti in New York. The choice of Brooklyn College, his alma mater, affected him...

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