Thursday, March 31, 2016

Boy Detective of Carroll Gardens; Cobble Hill's Problems with LICH; and More Brooklyn Briefs

- Meet the boy detective of Carroll Gardens. [DNAinfo]

- Cobble Hill still awaiting answers from Fortis and NYU about LICH development plans. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- The city on Tuesday bought a seven-acre lot along the Williamsburg-Greenpoint waterfront for $53 million, to be used for the expansion of the long-promised Bushwick Inlet Park. [Brownstoner]

- A Brooklyn realtor has been arrested for allegedly pocketing deposits on apartments. [Gothamist]

- New York City bridge climbers may soon be faced with up to a year in the slammer. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- Karate championship hopes dashed after Bushwick fire destroys dojo. [DNAinfo]

- Meet the guitar repair king of Greenpoint. [Brooklyn Magazine

- Join the Prospect Park Alliance for Opening Weekend in Prospect Park on April 2 + 3, with food, festivities and family fun. [Sheepshead Bites]

- New York native's brilliant performance on "Wheel of Fortune" is going viral. [abc7]

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Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Gowanus-Based Software 'Genius' Stirs Up Controversy

An annotated article as it appeared in News Genius.
 An online tool from the Gowanus-based Genius and a new chief for its News Genius product, ex-Gawker editor Leah Finnegan, have people asking whether strangers should be allowed to annotate online articles.

As Brooklyn reports, the tool is Genius’s Web Annotator, which allows Genius users to highlight sections of articles published in the Internet and offer "context/opinions/reactions/whatever" right in the text.

News Genius editors highlight sections of text they have something to say about and leave comments.

This doesn't sit right with some authors, especially those who write small, private-ish blogs -- like  Ella Dawson,  who writes about living with herpes.

"Seeing your thoughts over my words feels like a violation," she wrote to News Genius.

More here.

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Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Brooklyn Drag Queens on RuPaul; Pakistani Community Mourns; and More Brooklyn Briefs

- How will the Mayor's zoning changes affect Brooklyn’s residents, historic areas, and transitioning neighborhoods like East New York? [Brownstoner]

- Brooklyn's Pakistani community mourns after Lahore terror attack kills dozens. [CBS]

- A guide to the Brooklyn drag queens on ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ this season. [Brokelyn]

- Participatory budgeting takes place this week, and Brooklynites can vote in their neighborhood or at Borough Hall. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- Sam Talbot’s passion for food will be on display come summer, when his new venture, Pretty Southern, opens on Bedford Avenue. [Brooklyn Magazine]

- Trump's week of errors and falsehoods. [Politico]

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Serious Fire in Williamsburg Monday Night

A two-alarm fire broke out on the first floor of a six-story apartment building at 232 Metropolitan Ave., between Bedford and Driggs avenues in Williamsburg, late Monday night, according to Patch.

Patch reports two persons were injured, while PIX11 reports that six adults and one child were hurt and ferried to local hospitals.

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Monday, March 28, 2016

Cops Save Teen from Bridge Jump; Drunk TED Talks; and More Brooklyn Briefs

- NYPD officers save suicidal teen from jumping off Manhattan Bridge. [PIX11]

- BP Eric Adams livid after four cops violently arrest on-duty mailman in Crown Heights. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- This map charts all of NYC's public bathrooms. [Brooklyn Magazine]

- Here's what Montague Street looked like 100 years ago. [Brownstoner]

- Welcome to Drunk TED Talks, the world's premiere source of highly intelligent people talking about weird stuff they care deeply about while extremely drunk (with PowerPoints). [LittlefieldNYC]

- The Northside Festival (music, innovation and film) is coming back on June 6. [Northside]

- So there is a Psychedelic Society of Brooklyn. [Vice]

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Sunday, March 27, 2016

Grandma's House Restaurant, Near Barclay's Center, Is Pretty Adorable

Photos by MK Metz
If you like to eat in adorable restaurants, try Grandma's House, the all-American Brooklyn-themed diner at 364 Atlantic Ave., not far from Barclays Center.

The place is decorated with old beer taps, a model train, a vintage dial-style pay phone, Brooklyn Eagle reprints and other comfort decor.

The food will bring you back to the childhood you probably never had but wish you did -- flapjacks, mac n' cheese served in a skillet, meatballs, chicken pot pie, ribs, a bucket of chicken chips, with local fresh produce and a variety of salads. (The salads include an iceberg wedge, of course.) And to drink, a Fox’s U-Bet Brooklyn egg cream.

Not only does Grandma's House use locally-sourced food -- all the decor is American made, including the jukebox.

Some background on Grandma's House:

- Grandma's House, destroyed by Sandy in South Street Seaport, comes to Brooklyn [Brooklyn Eagle]

- Just Opened: Ridiculously Family-friendly Restaurant Grandma’s House [RedTri]

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Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Pier 6 Developer Tries to Pressure State; DUMBO Apocalypse; and More Brooklyn Briefs

- Here's your chance to stroll around DUMBO armed to the teeth, in the middle of an apocalypse. [DumboNYC]

- How de Blasio sold out to an affordable housing trade group, why their business is booming and why many of the units of the "low income" housing the City Council just voted for will be too expensive for current residents of rezoned neighborhoods. [Gothamist]

- Brooklyn Bridge Park's Pier 6 developer says financing could fall through if state doesn’t OK plan soon. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- A Brooklyn traffic agent is accused of posing as a police officer to force prostitutes into providing free sexual services. [Patch]

- Bring your own containers: Prospect Heights resident Sarah Metz has set out to start an eco-friendly supermarket, to be known as The Fillery. [Brownstoner]

The insurance agent who admitted to ripping off seniors at his Dyker Heights office jumped off the 69th Street Pier. [Bensonhurst Bean]

- Brooklyn Heights author Helen Simonson discusses her long-awaited second novel, “The Summer Before the War.”  [Brooklyn Eagle]

- 'Saucy' DUMBO moving company ads rile religious Jews in Brooklyn. [Jewish Voice]

- Comedian Joe Pera talks you to sleep in this thoroughly weird bedtime comedy video. [Brokelyn]

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Monday, March 21, 2016

Chris Christie in Brooklyn; Ditmas Park Slasher Caught; and More Brooklyn Briefs

- NJ Gov. Chris Christie spotted in Brooklyn in the Notre Dame locker room during the NCAA tournament. [Twitchy]

- Protesters rally amid allegations of child sex abuse at Brooklyn yeshiva. [Newsweek] via [PIX11]

- Cops have arrested the man who randomly slashed a woman in the neck in Ditmas Park earlier this month. [Daily News]

- Hospital staff are trying to find someone who knows this man before they pull the plug. [Instagram]

- Helen Simonson, Brooklyn Heights author of “Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand,” will be reading from her eagerly awaited second novel “The Summer Before the War”  on Tuesday at BookCourt. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- The City Council and Mayor Bill de Blasio have reached an agreement on zoning plan — Here’s what it means for Sheepshead Bay. [Sheepshead Bites]

- The heartless man who stole a charity box earlier this week from Bagelsa restaurant in Borough Park has been identified as a 37-year-old Hispanic man with a long criminal history. [JP Updates]

- Offshore wind farms coming soon to NY coast, less than 20 miles from Brooklyn. [Brooklyn Eagle]

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Thursday, March 17, 2016

The New Tesla Location Is Opening Friday in Red Hook

Red Hook Tesla. Photo by MK Metz
The new Tesla location opening Friday at 160 Van Brunt St. in Red Hook, Mashable reports.

McBrooklyn took a walk past the new store and service center over the weekend -- everything seems ready to go.

Want to take a vehicle for a spin? From Mashable: " You can take a look at the battery that makes up the entire base of the car and see the two motors that power the all-wheel-drive models. Not only that, but you can test drive a Model S right out of the store..."

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NYPD's 'Stingrays' Can Spy on Your Cell Phone, Track Your Location

Skynet, by Andres Rojas
 Just in case you weren't sure whether or not the government was really able to listen in on all your phone calls and track you everywhere . . .

The NYPD confirmed to the Civil Liberties Union that it indeed owns and operates Stingrays— military-grade surveillance devices that spy on nearby cell phones and that can be used to track location.

In response to an NYCLU FOIL request, the NYPD disclosed it used Stingrays nearly 1,016 times between 2008 and May of 2015.

“If carrying a cell phone means being exposed to military grade surveillance equipment, then the privacy of nearly all New Yorkers is at risk,” Donna Lieberman, executive director of the NYCLU, said in a statement. “Considering the NYPD’s troubling history of surveilling innocent people, it must at the very least establish strict privacy policies and obtain warrants prior to using intrusive equipment like Stingrays that can track people’s cell phones.”

Stingrays allow authorities to spy on cell phones in the area by mimicking a cell tower, and allow the police to pinpoint a person’s location and, in some configurations, collect the phone numbers that a person has been texting and calling and intercept the contents of communications. Stingrays also sweep up information from nearby bystander cell phones even when used to target specific phones.

More at NCLU.

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Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Adorable Kittens Rescued from Suitcase Death; Goodbye Sunny Balzano; and More Brooklyn Briefs

House on DeGraw Street. Photo by MK Metz
- Brooklyn mom charged with murder after 2-year-old girl drowns in bathtub. [Pix11]

- Lawsuit charges: The owner of a trendy Brooklyn nightclub pressured workers into threesomes, boasted about sleeping with customers and freaked out about black patrons. [Daily News]

- Red Hook bids adieu to Sunny Balzano, legendary owner of Red Hook dive bar. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- Brooklyn Flea coming to DUMBO in April. [Gothamist]

- Do you recognize this soon-to-be-demolished Cobble Hill building? [Brownstoner]

- Cops rescue half-dozen adorable kittens stashed in suitcase in Williamsburg. [Daily News]

- Dad arrested after his child was barred from using school bathroom heads to court. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- DOE says PS8 /307 rezoning a success. [Politico]

- Caught on camera: Guy steals a charity box filled with hundreds of dollars meant to send children with cancer to summer camp. [ABC7]

- "Rat Academy" at St. Ann's Church in Brooklyn Heights Saturday. [BHB]

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Monday, March 14, 2016

SUNY Downstate Bully; Fire Burns Down Church; and More Brooklyn Briefs

Door art in Red Hook. Photo by MK Metz
 - The 5 most polluted sites in Brooklyn. [Brownstoner]

- A bully who works at SUNY Downstate Medical Center blamed his bad behavior on being from Brooklyn, his alleged victim claims. [NY Post]

- Northeast Williamsburg is Brooklyn’s newest fake neighborhood. [Brooklyn Magazine]

- Man gropes, attempts to rape woman in lobby of Borough Park apartment. [PIX11]

- Man, 19, shot twice after fight breaks out near East Flatbush church. [Daily News]

- Three-alarm fire destroys church in Brownsville. [CBSlocal]

- Commenters call bulls**t on money diary citing $1,100/month rent in Brooklyn. [Refinery29]

- Reddit co-founder Ohanian joins ‘philanthropic flashmob’ to fund Brooklyn classrooms. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- Photos from a Brooklyn tattoo shop on a Friday night. [Vice]

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Flowers on Sunny's Pickup Truck, Red Hook

Photo by MK Metz
Flowers and hand-written messages covered the hood of Sunny Balzano's pickup truck, parked outside Sunny's Bar in Red Hook on Saturday.

The neighborhood is in mourning over the death of the iconic barkeep, who died near midnight on Thursday. Old friends, the curious and dozens of musicians packed into the bar over the weekend.

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Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Cop Caught in Friendly Fire in Bushwick; Transgender Bathroom Access; 36-Hour Party and More Brooklyn Briefs

- A New York City police detective was shot on Tuesday, apparently in a crossfire with a sergeant, as they sought to make a drug arrest in Bushwick. [NY Times]

Troubling allegations about Bay Ridge's new top cop. [Bensonhurst Bean]

- New York City sheriffs have seized control of a troubled Bay Ridge hotel — and the hotel may get shut down after the owner failed to pay more than $100,000 in fines. [Daily News]

- De Blasio orders transgender bathroom access in NYC. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- Brooklyn pol Brad Lander wants you to have to pay for your plastic bags at the store by Earth Day. [Patch]

- Jehovah’s Witnesses’ Brooklyn properties see price surge. [Post]

- Police search for missing 13-year-old Brooklyn girl, Dijenay Nelson. [Brooklyn12]

- The Brooklyn Eagle sent a reporter to Cuba, and he brought back photos of amazingly preserved American cars from the 40s and 50s. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- Calling all techno fiends: Unter and the Bunker are throwing a 36-hour party in Brooklyn. [Thump/Vice]

- House Of Cards doesn't know where the Brooklyn Bridge goes. [Gothamist]

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After Cops Tasered & Beat Him, 86-Year-Old Brooklyn Man Cleared of Charges of Making Soup

See video at NBC.
A judge dismissed criminal charges Monday against an 86-year-old Brooklyn man who was Tasered in his kitchen by NYPD cops who were supposed to be looking for a man in his 20s....

John Antoine was making soup and chopping an onion when cops burst into his Bedford Stuyvesant apartment last October and zapped him twice, the Daily News reports.

NBC reports that Antoine was also kicked in the stomach by the cops.

Antoine was charged with “harassment" for holding a knife while making soup, according to Rolling Out.

His lawyer, who thanks God his client didn't have a heart attack, says the city is looking at a $5 million lawsuit.

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Monday, March 7, 2016

Brooklyn Cops Take Goofy Selfies; Hottest Pizza in Williamsburg; and More Brooklyn Briefs

- Blanche is coming to Brooklyn. [New Yorker]

- Brooklyn dad arrested for repeated abuse of toddler. [NY Post]

- The remarkable legacy of David Weinrib, curator of Pratt Institute’s Sculpture Park. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- Brooklyn Folk Festival's concerts, screenings and dances are on the way. [Time Out]

- NYPD cops take suspect's phone and take a bunch of selfies and goofy videos. [Daily News]

- Semilla's terrific one-of-a-kind pizza is the hottest thing in Williamsburg right now. [Bloomberg]

- Beloved Brooklyn photographer dies at 96; worked for the Brooklyn Eagle until he was 90 years old. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- Nancy Reagan dies at 94. [NBC]

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Comedy Festival in Brooklyn Creating Stir By Charging White, Straight Males More

The Cinder Block Comedy Festival is charging women, people of color, and members of the LGBTQIA community (and now people with disabilities) 77 percent of what it is charging white, straight males to submit material for the festival. (March 15 deadline.)

The discount is meant to acknowledge pay disparities between the discounted groups and white, straight males, the festival's founders say. (The price disparity was reported in Brokelyn.)

This price difference is causing a bit of controversy. Twitter and Facebook commenters have cried discrimination. One woman wrote, "All male comedians should boycott this..."

Festival director Coree Spencer told the Daily Dot she thought up the submission pricing to send an inviting message to minority comedians who have experienced being a “token” comic.

On their website, the group says, "We would like to publicly state that we stand by our decision and our commitment to creating a diverse comedy festival, showcasing talent from all backgrounds. The wage-gap priced early bird deadline will be extended until March 31st.

The festival starts in Williamsburg on Sept. 16.

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Thursday, March 3, 2016

Shot in the Butt in Crown Heights; Brooklyn Perv; Brooklyn Influencers and More

- A man was shot in the butt across the street from two Crown Heights school yesterday afternoon. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- Borough Board approves sale of Brooklyn Heights Library, but advocacy group files a federal complaint. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- Women-owned businesses are gaining ground in Brooklyn, with a 39 percent increase in the borough over a five-year period. [DNA info]

- An upstate father's horrible discovery has led to the discovery of Brooklyn man who police say preyed on children. [13Wham]

- On May 14, hundreds of cyclists will ride en masse along 7.5 miles of the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway at the inaugural Brooklyn Bike Rave, a glowtastic night ride with lights and music. [Brownstoner]

- Interesting list: 100 Most Influential People in Brooklyn Culture. [Brooklyn Magazine]

- No need for Con-Ed: Brooklyn-based LO3 Energy is running a platform that lets anyone sell energy to their neighbors using blockchain technology. [BizJournals]

- A little-known Newtown Creek access point takes shape. [Greenpointers]

- Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton weigh in on important Brooklyn issues. [Brokelyn]

- Shimmy ‘Til Her Garters Break’: Drag Queen Visury Fox heats up Bay Ridge. [Bensonhurst Bean]

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Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Eileen C. Dugan Memorial 5K to be Held in Brooklyn Bridge Park on April 16

Courtesy of Brooklyn Bridge Park
  The 18th Eileen C. Dugan Memorial 5K will be held on April 16 at 9 a.m.

 Nearly 400 runners participated in 2015.

This 3.1-mile race remembers Eileen Dugan, a New York State Assemblymember who represented the local 52nd AD (Brooklyn Heights, Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens, Red Hook, Sunset Park, and Bay Ridge) from 1980 to 1996.

The race was announced by the The Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy, St. Francis College, and Brooklyn Bridge Park (BBP).

"Her early leadership and advocacy to create a public park on the Brooklyn waterfront were instrumental in making Brooklyn Bridge Park a reality," says BBP.

 In 1996, at the age of 51, Assemblywoman Dugan passed away from breast cancer..

"The Eileen C. Dugan run has really taken off since Brooklyn Bridge Park began hosting the event," said her brother, St. Francis College President Brendan J. Dugan. "It's the perfect fit, an example of everything my sister worked for and dreamed could be possible on the Brooklyn waterfront."

For its first 13 years, the Eileen C. Dugan Run was a tradition on the streets of Carroll Gardens and Cobble Hill. This year's course will begin and end at Pier 6 in Brooklyn Bridge Park. The run is limited to the first 500 entrants. All proceeds from the run will support the Conservancy's free cultural, recreational, and educational events.

18th Eileen C. Dugan Memorial 5K
When: Saturday, April 16, 2016 at 9:00 am
Where: Pier 6
Register: Purchase tickets at
$40 registration from March 1 – April 15; $50 registration on Race Day (if available)
Space is limited; register in advance

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Brooklyn Panel Tonight: What Does It Take to Create Great Virtual Reality Experiences?

Courtesy of Made In NY Media Center
 During this panel in DUMBO, the Made in NY Media Center, in partnership with Virtualize (a VR content agency based in NY), will bring together the creators of four outstanding VR (Virtual Reality) pieces from Sundance:

Giant (Milica Zec & Winslow Porter)
Waves (Ben Dickinson)
Perspective 2: The Misdemeanor (Rose Troche)
Kiya (Jamie Pallot/Emblematic Group)

Panelists will talk about the process of creating compelling VR work: what inspired the experience, what they learned works best in the medium, the biggest challenges they faced, what they would have done differently.

6:30pm – 7:00pm – happy hour
7:00pm – 8:30pm – panel
8:30pm – reception

Made in NY Media Center by IFP
30 John Street

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Brooklyn Poetry Slam Tonight

Jessica Sucher
An intergenerational poetry slam and open mic is taking place at 7 p.m. tonight at BRIC House in Downtown Brooklyn.

The slam features Brooklyn-based poets who respond to city culture, national issues, and the exhibitions on-view at BRIC House. Hosted by Mahogany L. Browne, with music by DJ Jive Poetic.

BRIC House is located at 647 Fulton Street. (718) 683-5600

2/3/4/5 to Nevins St | B/Q/R to DeKalb St | G to Fulton St

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