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It’s All About Books at Brooklyn Book Festival

Jun 19, 17 It’s All About Books at Brooklyn Book Festival

Posted by in All, New York

The book festival begins with a launch, and this year it happened on June 15: the Brooklyn Book Festival (BKBF) announced the first 150 writers who will come together for this special occasion, which will open on September 11, 2017. Children’s Day and Festival Day, on September 16 and 17, respectively were also announced at the 11th annual BKBF launch. Chris Hayes, host of MSNBC is on the list, as well as Lynn Nottage, Pultzer Prize winner twice over; and children’s book illustrator Liniers of Argentina; and Karl Ove Knausgård; writer of the autobiographical novels “My Struggle.” “I am proud to welcome back the Brooklyn Book Festival for another year of engaging book lovers of all ages,” said Eric Adams, Brooklyn Borough President. “It is important that we empower Brooklynites with the endless possibilities of human imagination by encouraging reading for all, particularly our youngest.” The rich diversity of Brooklyn’s population will be mirrored by the participation of authors from all over the globe. The following names are just a small example of who to expect joining the festival. • Erna Brodber                Jamaica • Ali Boccy Eckermann  Australia • Santiago Gamboa         Columbia • Wioletta Greg                Poland • Peter Kimani                  Kenya • Young-ha Kim               South Korea Colson Whitehead will also be on hand to receive the annual Best of Brooklyn Award. Beloved Brooklyn writers Maira Kalman, Lynn Nottage, Sean Qualls and Selina Alko will also be lauded at the festival. Former Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz founded the Brooklyn Book Festival in 2006 as a way to exhibit literature’s “Brooklyn voice.” Participants can expect to see authors in all the different manifestations of their writing careers, and in all the various genres, including nonfiction, fiction, poetry, comics, young adult, and more. Panel discussions will focus on issues of current political and cultural import, such as reporting on refugees, the Supreme Court, and more, with nearly 100 programs on 13 stages on Festival...

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Brooklyn Man First Citi Bike Fatality

Jun 14, 17 Brooklyn Man First Citi Bike Fatality

Posted by in All, News

After four years and over 43 million trips, the country’s largest bike share program, Citi Bike, had its first fatality when Dan Hanegby was hit by a bus in the Chelsea section of Manhattan. Hanegby was a 36-year old investment banker who was riding a Citi Bike on 26th Street between Seventh and Eighth Avenues when he swerved to go around a parked van. He then hit the bus that was traveling next to him, fell off his bicycle and landed under the rear tires of the bus. He was pronounced dead at Bellevue Hospital. Although clearly an accident, and the first Citi Bike fatality, fatalities of bike riders in general in New York have been increasing. Bikers have been demanding more safeguards, especially since 2016’s bicyclist death count was larger than that of 2015. In 2017 there were four fatal bicycle accidents up until April in New York. Hanegby worked as an investment banker at Credit Suisse, and lived in Brooklyn with his wife Sasha, and two children. His neighbors described him as stoic, spending his weekends devoted to his family. He was originally from near Tel Aviv in Israel, and came to the US to attend Binghamton University in 2003. He later transferred to Brown. In Israel, he was a tennis star, rising at one time to the rank of No. 1 in the country. He met his wife when he was ten years old at the Israel Tennis Centers. He quit tennis to join Israel’s Special Forces. After he was discharged from the army he took up tennis again, and headed to the USA to play at an American University. While at Brown he ranked No. 66 in singles tennis in the...

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Pop-up Picnics Picking Up in Popularity

Jun 07, 17 Pop-up Picnics Picking Up in Popularity

Posted by in All, Entertainment

Leave it to Brooklynites to imagine new and creative ways to meet up and make new friends. Called PopUpBrooklyn, it is the largest d-i-y dinner party in the country. Party goers signed up, paying $35 per person for the opportunity to share a meal outdoors with about 6,000 other participants. The most recent event’s locale was not even known to the crowds until only three hours before a 5pm launch time. The $35 cover fee gets you tables, chairs, music and the venue, provided by event planner Hand Made Events, while participants bring their own food and table decorations. There is a push to have everyone clothed in white. One participant, who has attended four such gatherings was excited: “It’s a great sense of fun,” said Tiana Walton, from Kensington. “All your friends come out and you meet new people on line and we all have a great time.” Another dinner guest, Michael Hellerman from Newark said, “It’s always a different location and they had a strategy because they thought it was going to be at one location and then they had to adapt.” The latest party took place in Red Hook on Pier 12 with great views of lower Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty. Before this the party has been in Prospect Park, while the next one is planned for Governor’s...

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Understanding Waste Management

Jun 01, 17 Understanding Waste Management

Posted by in All, New York

Today, there are so many ways to work on reducing our waste and landfill necessities and understanding waste management. It doesn’t have to be that we simply buy whatever we want and then throw it away, and many of the waste management companies in the States like have come to appreciate and highlight the path to waste management. The government sets targets each year for waste management. A new study published in 2007 set a target for a 50% reduction in household waste by 2020. How is this reduction to be achieved? There are a number of ways. Refuse: We can think about waste management in terms of prevention. If you don’t buy things that you don’t completely need, then you won’t need to throw away the packaging from those products. You can avoid disposable products as much as possible as well. We can also look at reducing what we use. We can buy things that are made to last like reusable plastic wrap or Tupperware instead of tinfoil and throw away wraps. You can buy in bulk as well and this will reduce the amount of packaging that is needed. Certainly, you can take your own shopping bag when you go to the grocery store and even to the mall to shop for clothes. Focus on reusing items. Jars that you buy for one thing can be reused for another; ice cream tubes can turn into storage containers. A plastic bag that was used at the grocery store could be reused for the mall or as a bin liner. Careful disposal is also important. If an item can’t be recycled or reused, it can still be taken care of in the right way. Dispose of batteries in designated recycling centers; bring in your glass or cans to get a rebate in certain states. You can look at the websites for Bridgeton landfill and other locations to see how they are working to ensure careful disposal. If you always have these ideas in mind,...

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Half Marathon Happenings

May 22, 17 Half Marathon Happenings

Posted by in Sports

So who were among the 27,000+ runners signed up for the Airbnb Brooklyn Half Marathon this past Saturday?  What were the newsworthy stories that ran (excuse the pun) at the largest half marathon event of America 2017? So popular was the event that it sold out in a staggering 26 minutes. The 27,440 who completed the point-to-point race started by the Brooklyn Museum and ended in Coney Island at the boardwalk. Participants included Karlie Kloss (fashion model for Vogue, Victoria Secret and Taylor Swift’s music video ‘Bad Blood,’ among others), filmmaker Casey Neistat and more. Those running for a cause included the Team For Kids (TFK) supporting NYRR Youth Programs, Memorial Sloan Kettering’s Fred’s Team (for children with leukemia), and many more. And then there were the fun runners. The man and woman who began the race single and sprinted through the finish line as a married couple.   Having been running buddies for the last half-decade, Krissa Cetner and Alexander Salazar tied the knot at around six miles in at Prospect Park.  As Salazar noted, “Marriage is like a marathon, it’s not a sprint.  There’s a lot of years ahead of you in a marriage and sometimes you’re both really into it and can push each other and sometimes the other partner has to help pull you through whatever challenge lies ahead. You both have to keep each other motivated in a race and in a marriage.” And for those who needed a bite to eat after the event, the good news was that they could do so in the reopening of a former Childs restaurant, which has been transformed into a huge food hall with “locally sourced” wholesome choices and plenty of Coney charm. Any runners who decided to try out the new eatery got a voucher for 21 percent off of the next time they...

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Coney Island Ups Its Rep as a Destination with Kitchen 21

May 17, 17 Coney Island Ups Its Rep as a Destination with Kitchen 21

Posted by in All, Entertainment

Now there is yet another reason to head down south to Coney Island. Within the historic walls of a sprawling Spanish revival building along the boardwalk, five restaurants are competing for customers in a creative new take on dining called Kitchen 21. The five eateries are Parachute Bar, Community Clam Bar, Test Kitchen, The Café and Boardwalk & Vine. As can be deduced by the names, there is quite a variety within the premises. Four of the restaurants are situated on the huge ground floor, offering casual café dining, a traditional bar, an oyster bar, and full meals. If you’ve come for the view of the magnificent Atlantic Ocean, that can be afforded upstairs on the rooftop deck. According to general manager of Kitchen 21 Jim Coughlin, the upstairs will be used as the VIP space for events taking place right next door at the Ford Amphitheater. When not hosting VIPs the roof becomes Boardwalk & Vine, a wine bar with eight types on tap, also serving beers and other forms of alcohol. “Kitchen 21 has something for everyone to enjoy, with year-round dining now and the wonderful local Brooklyn energy,” said one observer. The establishment is scheduled to open on May 21st, just in time for the Brooklyn Half Marathon, whose finish line is traditionally in Coney Island, at the...

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Rain Wreaks Havoc on Gowanus Retaining Wall

May 07, 17 Rain Wreaks Havoc on Gowanus Retaining Wall

Posted by in All, Gowanus

Last Friday was a rough day in New York due to flooding caused by almost non-stop rain at the end of last week. Among the various incidents around town, in the Gowanus section of Brooklyn a railing fell as well as a large part of a retaining wall. The collapse occurred right below the Gowanus Expressway, closing much-used 17th Street. Engineers were quickly brought to the scene to make the needed repairs. Luckily there were no injuries associated with the incident. “I pass here at least three to four times a day, and I’m amazed. I can’t believe how lucky we all are by someone not passing by there and getting hurt at the time that it fell down,” said a Gowanus resident. “It looks ridiculous. It’s rusted out. It was an incident waiting to happen.” Hamilton Avenue took up the slack with the closure of 17th Street, causing major traffic slow-downs. The Office of Emergency Management said that they expected the road to re-open by late Friday evening. In Staten Island the rain caused damage to some private residences, with flood waters flowing on Bay Street rushing into the street’s storm drains. Midtown Manhattan was not immune to flood damage, with large puddles accumulating on street corners, and high water levels found on the West Side Highway. In one case a school bus filled with students had trouble navigating the watery road. Again, no one was hurt. Another incident involved a FDNY truck, which ended up taking assistance from helpful citizens who stood in the rain directing traffic around the disabled truck, getting soaking wet in the process. It was a very bad day for one motorcyclist whose wheels ended up under water. Help for this biker simply came too little, too...

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High School Students Learn About Holocaust from those Who Were There

Apr 27, 17 High School Students Learn About Holocaust from those Who Were There

Posted by in All, Society

In order to perfect their roles in an upcoming play, Yeshivah of Flatbush students are paired with survivors willing to recount their experiences during World War II. The annual Witness Theater program brings several of the high school’s seniors together with one of eight Holocaust survivors in order to conduct research for their end-of-year performance. The students and the witnesses meet once a week, and it benefits the students, the survivors, and ultimately the audience watching the play. Survivor Ernest Biederman lost his brothers and sisters during the Holocaust, and his wife of 68 years just last year. “I lost my wife this last year, and it was very sad for me,” Biederman said. “I came here and feel like I’m alive again.” The students portray those survivors’ stories more vividly as a result of their personal connection with them. “I have brothers and sisters that I lost when they were their age,” Biederman added, referring to the students he mentored. “It’s been more than 70 years, and I never forget them.” The Witness Theater program is organized by Selfhelp Community Services, and will culminate with a performance at the Museum of Jewish...

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