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:
Thursday, May 21
For its monthly Art Off The Wall series, the Brooklyn Museum will focus in on its popular Basquiat: The Unknown Notebooks installation. To celebrate the exhibit, which includes the late Brooklyn-born artist’s poetry, sketches, and observations, the museum is inviting patrons to drop by starting at 6:30pm for a three-hour art-making workshop hosted by The Sketchbook Project, a curator-led tour of the show itself, a reading by local poets Erica Doyle, Harmony Holiday, John Keene, and Christopher Stackhouse, and special performances from afro-soul band King Holiday and the W.A.F.F.L.E. dance crew, among others. While you’re there, be sure to drop by the critically-acclaimed Kehinde Wiley: A New Republic exhibit, which closes on Sunday. Admission is $16 for adults, $10 for students and seniors, and free for members and children under 19. –N.R.
Friday, May 22
Matt Sharp, the bassist from Weezer back when Weezer was good, started The Rentals– a alt-pop outfit consisting of a rotating collective of talented musicians– back in 1995 as a side project. Just last year, the band dropped its first EP in 15 years, Lost in Alphaville, to critical acclaim. The accompanying tour hits The Music Hall of Williamsburg on Friday night, and Sharp’s vocals will be backed up by Shawn Glassford of Starfucker on bass and synthesizers, Ryen Slegr of Ozma and Ted Gowans of Tegan & Sara on guitar, Lizzy Ellison and Patti King of Radiation City on vocals and synthesizers, and Jared Shavelson on drums. The show starts at 9pm, and tickets are $18 if you buy them in advance or $20 at the door. –K.H.
Saturday, May 23
Manhattan can keep Fallon, Brooklyn’s got its own late-night comedy experience in Brunch Night! at Union Hall. This Saturday at 7:30 pm, there a new “Toga Spring Break” “episode” of the late night-style comedy show hosted by standup comedian and UCB alum Jamie Leelo. The show, which has featured such illustrious guests as the Broad City girls and cast members from Orange Is The New Black and 30 Rock, will welcome Saturday Night Live’s Sasheer Zamata (who recently completed her second season on the show) and the incomparably funny Jo Firestone, host of Punderdome 3000!, The Incredible Game Show Showcase at UCB and Dr. Gameshow on WFMU. After the show, be sure to stick around for speciality drinks and a raucous after party. Advance tickets are $8 and $10 the day of. –N.R.
Sunday, May 24
I’ve written about it on this blog before, but one of my favorite days I’ve ever had since I moved to Brooklyn was at the Rub-A-Grub Memorial Day party in the backyard of Do or Dine a few years back. If you’re a fan of old school and 90’s hip hop, the all-day DJ showcase– which gradually morphs from chill hanging out in the sun to full-on nighttime dance party– is an experience you won’t want to miss. This Sunday, members of the I Love Vinyl crew will be spinning beats from 2pm-10pm, and that combined with drinks and off-the-wall delicious food specials from the crazy Do or Dine chefs (who made their names with a foie gras doughnut, after all) make for a pretty kickass party. You can buy a $15 ticket here, but if you’re smart, you’ll fork over the extra $10 for two drinks and two food items. –K.H.
Monday, May 25
The annual free concert in Green-wood Cemetery is a beloved Memorial Day tradition, so if you’ve never been before, grab your blanket and get moving. Starting at 2:30, the ISO Symphonic Band will be playing a selection of works from the many talented musicians whose final resting places are in the cemetery, including Leonard Bernstein, Fred Ebb, and Louis Moreau Gottschalk. Food and drink will be available for purchase, and its a lovely way to spend an afternoon and a fitting tribute to our fallen veterans. The concert is totally free, but the cemetery asks that you rsvp here. –K.H.
Tuesday, May 26
If you’ve got a springtime hankering to craft, the Brooklyn Grange is hosting a one-off class on bundle dyeing using fresh, locally grown and foraged dye plants. Expert Liz Spencer (aka the Dogwood Dyer) will cover all the basics of this environmentally friendly technique to create unique and colorful patterned textiles using plants (many of which are edible) and minerals. Each participant will leave with a bundle dyed silk scarf of their own creation, along with all the information necessary to continue experimenting with natural dyes at home. The class starts at 6:30pm and tickets are $75, which includes all materials. –K.H.
Wednesday, May 27
I had to stop casually browsing the Badass Brooklyn Animal Rescue Facebook page while bored at work last year after I fell in love with a mutt named Lionel Richie and talked about him incessantly for weeks until my boyfriend put the kibosh on the whole deal (in his defense, we already have our hands full with a high-energy cocker spaniel who recently tore into an unopened FedEx delivery of chocolate and ran up a $1100 vet bill). But there’s no denying that the organization’s mission– “rescuing badass dogs from idiot humans”– is a worthy one, and they are extremely good at using social media to convince people to take in dogs that would be otherwise homeless or worse. This Wednesday, the group is throwing its first fundraiser, The Badass Bash, at 7pm at Littlefield, with tons of food and drinks from sponsors like Tito’s Vodka, Sixpoint, and Four & Twenty Blackbirds; entertainment by a storyteller from The Moth and a live band; auction and raffle prizes like a three-day Maine getaway, dog walking and training packages, and gift certificates to local businesses; and plenty of adorable doggies on hand who need lots of scratches behind the ears. Tickets are $75, but all of the money goes to support the Badass crew’s awesome work. –K.H.