05/23/15 6:59am
There's room for over 150 people at Swan Dive's summer pop-up bar, part of our Total Gowanus Immersion. Photo: Swan Dive

There’s room for over 150 people at Swan Dive’s summer pop-up bar, part of our Total Gowanus Immersion. Photo: Swan Dive

If you haven’t already snagged a ticket for our Gowanus Immersion on June 6 with Brooklyn Brewery, where you’ll get four Brooklyn brews and lunch for $25, we’ve got some more juicy details that may sway you.

The early word on beers that’ll be poured at the various bars are: Sorachi Ace at Swan Dive (one of seven new outdoor bars to get your swerve on this summer); Green Market Wheat plus cans of Brooklyn Lager at the Roof at Whole Foods and Summer Ale at Givers and Takers.

We also have a new lunch option between 1 and 3 on Saturday at Runner & Stone. You can choose between a grilled pimento cheddar on their homemade whole wheat pain au lait or grilled gruyere with red wine braised shallots and dijon on rye, with a side of either seasonal slaw or their housemade chips. We have just a few of these tickets available so if this sounds up your alley, you should secure one, stat.

A few more deals have trickled in too, like a large order of any kind of pierogies (except blueberry and chocolate) for the price of a small at Baba’s Pierogies—which we raved about here.

You’ll also get a $22 day pass with gear rental (a $39 value) at Brooklyn Boulders, good till June 13, 20% off all dresses at the 3rd Ave. Calabar Imports, 20% off purchases, excluding custom work, at Twig Terrariams plus 8 more discounts detailed here.

Did we mention you’ll be getting all this for $25?

See you in Gowanus!

05/20/15 12:00pm
Governors Island opens for another awesome season on Saturday, as do all of the City beaches. Photo: Trust for Governors Island

Governors Island opens for another glorious season on Saturday, as do all of the City beaches. Photo: Trust for Governors Island

If you aren’t headed out of town for the long weekend, there’s a lot going on this week to keep you busy right here at home. First up, we’re teaming up with Brooklyn Brewery once again to present another installment of Funny Story. Tomorrow night, the hilarious AJ Jacobs, Rita Chinyere and Bradford Jordan will be joining us along with other surprise guests at the monthly storytelling/comedy event and, as always, your $10 advance ticket or $12 ticket at the door includes a free beer.

This week also brings Memorial Day and Fleet Week, both of which present lot of opportunities to show your support for our men and women in the military all over town–not to mention the chance to see some really cool ships. And since Governors Island and all city beaches open up for the season on Saturday, your outdoor life is about to improve exponentially. This year, the brand new Riis Park Beach Bazaar promises to make the beachgoing experience even better, with a full schedule of weekend concerts, vendors like Brooklyn Star and Court Street Grocers, pop-up markets, and rental beach chairs where you can order food and booze delivery with your iPhone. The inaugural event is a MOTHXR show at 2pm, where you can see Dan Humphrey from Gossip Girl in his new role as a rock band frontman (for real), and pregame for the 7pm Locals Surf School summer kickoff party (complete with tacos) at the Rockaway Beach Surf Club.

Summer really is just around the corner, and your social calendar is just going to get busier and busier. Now’s the time to ensure that you get to do all the stuff that YOU want to do, and we’re here to help with a week’s worth of suggestions:

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05/13/15 10:22am
Here they come! The BK Half is back on Saturday. Photo: nyrr.org

Here they come! The BK Half is back on Saturday. Photo: nyrr.org

If you are running in the Brooklyn Half this Saturday (and doesn’t it seem like everyone you know is?), good luck and we are all praying for no rain! If you aren’t, get some exercise this week in a much less intense fashion by participating in the first ever free Citi Bike day. This Thursday, in honor of Bike-to-Work Week, free Citi Bike day passes will be available at every kiosk all day long, so grab your helmet and get pedaling. After all, you’ll need to burn some cals if you plan to attend The Big Great Bacon Picnic, which is exactly what it sounds like, in Williamsburg this weekend. We also have a very limited number of tickets left to our Total Crown Heights Immersion with Brooklyn Brewery on Saturday, but if you miss out, our Gowanus edition on June 6 is shaping up to be super fun–the crawl includes two new bars in the neighborhood, one that hasn’t even opened.

With the Half and the bacon extravaganza bringing everyone and their brother to Brooklyn, you might feel an urge to get out of dodge, in which case you should sign up for Saturday’s bus trip to Catskill Distilling Company in Woodstock. Tailbus, a new company aimed at providing affordable, crowdsourced group transit and shared adventures, is selling $39 tickets here, which guarantee roundtrip bus transportation to Woodstock, free mimosas on board, a tour of the distillery, and discounted food and drinks.

Finally, plan ahead for some serious post-Memorial Day entertainment by picking up tickets for Nitehawk’s Film Feast presentation of Weird Al Yankovic’s crazy ‘80s cult classic, UHF, on June 2. As always, tickets are $75, include a multi-course menu of creative dishes based on the movie, and will sell out. The next night, June 3, Celebrate Brooklyn welcomes Chaka Kahn for its season opener, and master of Twitter Rob Delaney will be at The Bell House for a late show at 10:30pm, so you can easily cram in both. Chaka Kahn is free, which is amazing, but tickets to see Delaney are $25 and will be gone soon.

For now, here’s all the fun to pencil in this week.

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05/11/15 3:07pm

Screen Shot 2015-05-15 at 6.29.59 AMIt’s rare that one of our Immersions coincides with two new bar openings, but we’re excited to say that our Total Gowanus Immersion with Brooklyn Brewery is shaking out to be just one of those neighborhood crawls. On Saturday, June 6, we’ll be hitting up old favorites and spots so new there’s barely any Internet trace of them, like the soon-to-open Swan Dive on the Gowanus Canal, the brand-new Givers and Takers, the excellent Threes Brewing, and the always lovely Lavender Lake.

If you’ve never been on one of our day-long beer and food crawls, it’s basically the best bang you can get for $25 bucks. Once you purchase a ticket online, you’ll have an envelope of WAM–”walking around money”–waiting for you at Three’s Brewing between 1 and 3pm on Saturday, June 6.

Along with your coupons for a free Brooklyn brew at all of the four bars above, you’ll also get your choice of lunch:
-Alabama smoked chicken sandwich or a trio of veggie tacos (fried cauliflower, smoked portabello, sauteed zucchini) at The Roof at Whole Foods

-A mini crab roll with choice of small cup of chowder or fries at Littleneck. (Note though, that the window to get your Littleneck order is between 3 and 5–which is really more like “dunch.” We apologize, but they want to ensure they can serve everyone in a timely manner.)

-A grilled pimento cheddar on whole wheat pain au lait or grilled gruyere with red wine braised shallots and dijon on rye and a side option of slaw or housemade chips at Runner & Stone.

The deals you’ll be able to cash in include $3 cans of Brooklyn Lager or $5 draught Brooklyn beers at The Roof at Whole Foods, $1 off a cone at Ample Hills, a large order of any kind of pierogies (except blueberry and chocolate) for the price of a small at Baba’s Pierogies, a buy one get one free session during any weeknight at Gotham Archery through July 2, 10% off a $25+ order at Fletcher’s, a $22 day pass with gear rental (a $39 value) at Brooklyn Boulders, 20% off all dresses at the 3rd Ave. Calabar Imports, 20% off purchases, excluding custom work, at Twig Terrariams, 30% off any class at Brooklyn Homebrew, a $4 slice of pie at Four & Twenty Blackbirds, 20% off adult summer classes at the Gownaus branch of Textile Arts Center, and 20% off a bike helmet at 718 Cyclery to protect your pretty noggin when you drink and bike. Just kidding! We don’t want you do to that! But we do want you to day drink with us.

Our Total Crown Heights Immersion sold out days in advance, so get a head start on the Gowanus Immersion, and purchase your tickets now!

05/06/15 11:01am
The Brooklyn Botanic Garden's annual plant sale is back in the Cherry Esplanade today. Photo: Rebecca Bullene via bbg.org

The Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s annual plant sale is back in the Cherry Esplanade today. Photo: Rebecca Bullene via bbg.org

As spring really begins to kick into high gear, constant reminders of what makes Brooklyn such a great place to be are popping up around every corner. Who wouldn’t want to spend a gorgeous weekday evening taking in the explosion of blooms on display right now in Brooklyn Botanic Garden, particularly when you can bring a little piece of the flora home with you? Today, their spectacular annual Plant Sale is back and open to the public on the Cherry Esplanade from 9am-8pm. Head over after work for the largest selection of plants in the metropolitan area and free talks and workshops from the experts–although the sale continues tomorrow, the hours are much less amenable to people with jobs.

Gearing up for a summer’s worth of bike rides? If so, you won’t want to miss the 6th annual Bike Jumble taking place in Washington/JJ Byrne Park on Saturday. From 10am-4pm, vendors and cycling experts will be on hand to get you set up with a new or used bike and all the accessories you need, with lots of good deals to take advantage of.

Finally, if you consider yourself a serious board gamer, you’ve got your week cut out for you. First, Henri on Fifth is hosting a Badass Board Game Battle on Tuesday, May 12, where you can give everyone a taste of your Pictionary/Scattergories/Taboo/Jenga mastery in a contest to the death. Of course, if you’re feeling a bit less competitive, the friendly vibe at the board game and beer night sponsored by Victory Pints at Berg’n on Wednesday, May 13, might be right up your alley. Then again, that’s just a taste of all we found for you to do between now and next Wednesday–read on for more tips on how to round out Your Ideal Week.  (more…)

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04/29/15 9:40am
The new Whitney finally opens this weekend, and we're betting it will draw massive crowds. Photo: Ed Lederer via whitney.org

The new Whitney finally opens this weekend, and we’re betting it will draw massive crowds. Photo: Ed Lederer via whitney.org

This week ushers in the historic opening of the brand new and much-anticipated Whitney Museum of American Art. Although there are still tickets available to be one of the first to see it this weekend, it seems like it might be worth holding off a bit unless you love dealing with crowds. In the meantime, you can celebrate other creative pursuits by checking out the schedule for the month-long Red Bull Music Academy Festival that starts this Friday or by participating in one of several local events being held in connection with the first annual Independent Bookstore Day, which we wrote about earlier this week.

The start of May also means it’s been four full months since you made that New Year’s resolution to finally get your finances in order. The gurus at Brooklyn Plans, a community-based, collaborative financial planning startup venture, are here to help you finally do it: They’ve set up a pop-up in the Realty Collective office in Red Hook for the entire month of May, with a schedule of really helpful programs on things like student loan counseling, finance for couples, finding the perfect rental, and travel hacking.

But don’t worry, we’re not just here to lecture you about stuff you’d probably prefer to ignore. In fact, we’ve found something cool and different for you to do every day this week, so get out there and make it a seven-day stretch to remember! (more…)

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04/22/15 9:00am
The Sakura Matsuri festival, a rite of spring in Brooklyn, returns on Saturday and Sunday. Photo: Liz Ligon via Brooklyn Botanic Garden

The Sakura Matsuri festival, a rite of spring in Brooklyn, returns on Saturday and Sunday. Photo: Liz Ligon via Brooklyn Botanic Garden

Are you still basking in the glorious glow of last weekend’s weather? Guess what, guys–it’s only the beginning! Months of sun and fun times outside stretch before us, and you can almost feel a collective sigh as everyone shrugs the weight of winter off their shoulders. This weekend, you can take in a giant dose of Mother Nature at the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens’ famed Sakura Matsuri festival, which celebrates Japanese culture and our borough’s incredible wealth of cherry blossoms; tonight, you can get a jump on your gardening with a free workshop on Bokashi Composting at the Windsor Terrace Library; and you can start planning ahead by donating to Three’s Brewery’s kickstarter campaign to transform a neglected lot into a 3,000 square foot green space that is being called Gowan-oasis.

Speaking of planning ahead, you should hurry up and buy tickets to the second Radio Love Fest, a multi-day festival of live events featuring your favorite WNYC shows on stage at BAM. Some have already sold out, but if you get a jump on it, you can still snag a seat to things like the May 6 Terry Gross interview with Marc Maron or the May 10 tribute to Morrissey by a an all-star lineup of Mexican bands.

Do you really miss perms, glam rock, and pastel taffeta? Hit up the If You Leave: Pretty In Pink 80’s Prom at Littlefield on Saturday night and dance the night away in the style of the most decadent decade–who cares about that jerkface Blaine anyway!

And for a 90′s throwback with an important social objective, head to Washington Square at 7pm tonight to see Kevin Powell, the Real World star turned influential political activist, speak at “Where Do We Go From Here,” BK Nation’s public forum on how to organize communities in the aftermath of Ferguson, and the deaths of Walter Scott and Eric Garner.

We’ve got lots more great ideas of things to do to round out your Ideal Week in Brooklyn, from comedy to hip hop to beekeeping– read on and start making plans:

(more…)

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04/20/15 11:18am
It's been a rough winter, and a late spring. You deserve some day drinking. Photo: Alison Brockhouse

It’s been a rough winter, and a late spring. You deserve some day drinking. Photo: Alison Brockhouse

On Saturday, May 16, Brooklyn Based and Brooklyn Brewery are headed to Crown Heights for the first Immersion of the year. If you’ve never been on one of our daylong food, drinking, and shopping crawls, here’s how they work—for a mere $25 you get a wad of “walking around money” that entitles you to four of Brooklyn’s best beers at four different bars, your choice of two lunches, and sweet deals around the neighborhood.

Tickets are sold out, so these details are for ticket holders only.  You can always join us without a ticket though–all the bars will be open and we’re happy to give you a pack of deals so long as they last–we have extras. And be sure to get tickets to our Total Gowanus Immersion on June 6 before they disappear, too!

Here is a map of all the stops we’ll be making. The “official stops” where you’ll be consuming the beers and food you’ve paid for are in red, and the deal stops are in orange.

This year, the fun begins at Berg’n, where you can pick up your Immersion cash between 1 and 3pm, then get a Green Market Wheat beer and, if you’ve ordered it, a slow smoked, pulled pork with pommes frites from Mighty Quinn’s Barbecue. From there, you can choose your own adventure, hitting up Covenhoven for your choice of BLAST!, a double IPA, or Sorachi Ace, a saison-style ale; Butter & Scotch for a Chocolate Stout (with the option of upgrading to a beer float for $3!) and Catfish for Summer Ale. If you ordered lunch at Ital Kitchen, one of our favorite Caribbean food joints in Crown Heights, note that it’s right near Butter & Scotch, so you may want to go there first to order your choice of veggie jerk chicken, Brooklyn chow mein, any stew or veggie jerk wrap.

The deals we’ve wrangled include 20% off any purchase of $20 or more Owl & Thistle General Store, a free coffee or tea when you purchase any baked goodie from Cafe Forte; 20% off jewelry at Calabar Imports, 20% off any purchase at Reclaimed Home and 20% off any non-sale items at Lady J Jewelry; 30% off a Five Element acupuncture session at Mountain (which you’ll probably want to save for later, and you can, till August of this year) plus 25% off a selection of drinks the day of the Immersion; $4 Brooklyn beers at 706 Bar and at Two Saints; $3 off an iced latte at Breukelen Coffee House; and 20% off any ice cream treat at Tinto.

We’ll be sending some photo safari clues and inspiration throughout the day for fun and prizes, too, so be sure to follow @brooklynbrewery and @brooklynbased on Twitter for hints. On Monday following the the Immersion we’ll select the coolest pics tagged with #Immersion to win prizes like Brokelyn’s Brooklyn Cocktail Book, a $25 gift cert at Hullabaloo Books, Brooklyn Based totes, Brooklyn Brewery goodies, and 10% off your first service at Deck Salon.

04/15/15 9:43am
Novelist Junot Diaz is doing a free reading and Q&A at St. Francis College this Thursday night at 7pm. Photo: St. Francis College

Novelist Junot Diaz is doing a free reading and Q&A at St. Francis College this Thursday night at 7pm. Photo: St. Francis College

Been a while since you heard a really great story? This week, there are so many cool literary/storytelling events going on in Brooklyn that we can’t possibly choose between them, but here’s a quick rundown so you can decide for yourself.

First up, we have to deal with the sad news that Big Terrific, the beloved weekly comedy show at Cameo run by Jenny Slate, Gabe Liebman, and Max Silvestri, then by just Gabe Liebman and Max Silvestri, and then, for the past few years, by Max Silvestri alone, is coming to an end after seven hilarious years. Final shows are tonight and next Wednesday at 8pm and, as always, are free.

Thursday night, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao author Junot Diaz will be reading and doing a Q&A at St. Francis College as part of the Walt Whitman Writers Series. Admission is free and first come first served, so you should probably get there long before the 7pm start time.

If you are looking to laugh on Thursday, we are once again teaming up with comedian Tom Shillue and Brooklyn Brewery to bring you Funny Story, the hilarious monthly showcase of excellent raconteurs that CBS named one of the 5 best storytelling shows in New York City. As always, your $10 ticket includes a beer, and this time we are running a special 2-for-1 deal for advance ticket purchases in honor of NYC Comedy Week.

Nostalgia for your adolescence? You won’t want to miss Goosebumps creator R.L. Stine when he reads from the latest installment in his creepy Fear Street series, Don’t Stay Up Late, at Bookcourt on Saturday night at 7pm. Just don’t walk home alone in the dark!

Of course, there are lots of other kinds of things going on this week in Brooklyn, from Industry City’s Open Studios to the seventh annual Brooklyn Folk Festival. Read on for more ideas on cool ways to spend the next seven days. (more…)

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04/10/15 10:00am
BHcrowd

Hot Rabbit is a longstanding party that frequents Monster every Friday, Lovegun on Tuesdays, and monthly at Lot 45. Photo: Maro Hagopian

 

In “New York’s Lesbian Bars Are Disappearing,” Heather Dockray did the math on the number of lesbian bars left in New York and came up with a grand total of four. But while bars are on the decline, the number of parties for queer women remains steady–if you know where to go. This list is a useful start. For information on other events, make sure to check out Project Q: Events for Queer Women on Facebook. (more…)