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October 3, 2012

Faces of Atlantic Antic 2012

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Labor Day and the Equinox may ring in Fall for most, but summer doesn't end for me until Atlantic Antic. I've gushed about the mile-long street festival before. I've been going since I was a kid and it always seems like the entirety of Brooklyn is out based both on the crowds and the numer of friends and acquaintances we end up running into along the way.

I take my camera with me every year, but this time I chose to focus on the people who were out and about on Sunday. See the faces of Brooklyn's biggest street fair after the jump.

Continue reading "Faces of Atlantic Antic 2012" »

July 27, 2011

Dekalb Market Open for Business

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Last weekend saw the launch of Dekalb Market, a new open air marketplace on the edge of Downtown Brooklyn. I had planned on writing an elaborate post about it, but it seems that's not going to happen soon, so I'll have to settle for a quick series of photos with a bit of commentary after the jump...

Continue reading "Dekalb Market Open for Business" »

May 9, 2010

Recently on Examiner: Drinking in Brooklyn and the Freedom Party

A new Hot Bird rises from the ashes

If there was much of a theme at all in my last couple weeks of posts it was Brooklyn Bars. Besides the regular Brokelyn 25 series that I've gotten moving again, I've also posted about a few new choice spots to imbibe that have opened up recently. Above is Hot Bird, which I lucked into on its second night open. I basically got the first shots of the space and thus ended up on Brownstoner and Eater. The place looks pretty amazing, so I expect to spend quite a bit of time there this summer.

See what else I've been posting about after the jump...

Continue reading "Recently on Examiner: Drinking in Brooklyn and the Freedom Party" »

November 2, 2009

A Busy Weekend of Revelry

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It's a good thing that we had an extra hour thrown in this weekend, because there was so much going on this weekend, we needed it. I certainly did. With Halloween and the New York City Marathon both happening in the same weekend, there was plenty of celebrating to do.

Friday night, Tammi and I walked DUMBO as a part of the ArtCrawl, which included many of the neighborhood's galleries. Saturday evening, we hit the Greenwich Village Halloween Parade Saturday evening with our friend Saun. I hadn't gone out to see that spectacle since I was a kid, so it was a lot of fun to be in the middle of it again.

After that, it was an evening of party-hopping from Boerum Hill out to Fort Greene until late into the night.

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The next day we were up bright and early to get out to our usual Marathon viewing spot in Fort Greene. We got a group together to cheer on the runners and watched from the elites through to the back of the pack.

Of course, Halloween and Marathon photos are posted on Flickr. Read about all that and more on my Examiner column.

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June 2, 2009

BAM's Dance Africa Festival

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Memorial Day was busy. After hanging out at Habana Outpost, Tammi and I went to the Dance Africa festival at the Brooklyn Academy of Music.

In the last few years, the festival has effectively taken the place of the African Street Festival, which had been a summer milestone every year since my childhood. After moving from Boys & Girls High School to Commodore Barry park under the BQE, it has faltered into obscurity.

Thankfully, Dance Africa is a lot of fun in its own right, though much smaller.

We didn't catch any of the dance performances that are usually hosted in front of BAM this year, but we did wade into the market area and peruse the wares on offer. Carvings, fabric, and all sorts of food could be found as African, American and West Indian music blasted from one booth after another.

And what could mark the beginning of summer more than running into friends I haven't seen in years? In the sea of people, we just happened to see Olivia and Taya, who I don't think I've seen since High School, many moons ago.

Hopefully the weather will begin to cooperate and there will be more such outings throughout the season.

May 18, 2009

Butchery: The Halal Market

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When I want to buy a leg of lamb for a party, I typically go to one of the halal markets down on Atlantic Avenue. I prefer it mostly for the ephemeral reason that it just seems a little more authentic. But I also like it because it's not nearly as expensive as the shrink-wrapped New Zealand lamb that I find in my local Foodtown. And it's fresher too.

It doesn't hurt that the place I usually go to is right next to The Brazen Head. Coincidentally, of course.

It's also just down the block from Sahadi's, which is one of the best spice markets in the city. That's a good thing too, as this market is always a little barren. There's a row of legs on display like this and shoulders and other cuts in the walk-in in the back. Besides that, there are boxes of grains and seasonings, but otherwise it's an empty space.

Halal Meat Market
232 Atlantic Ave, Brooklyn,
(718) 625-2781

April 26, 2009

That New Train Smell

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Good signs from the MTA are few and far between, so I'm going to hope that this is one of them. A couple weeks ago, while standing on the platform at Jay Street, this brand-spanking new train parked at the Manhattan-bound A/C track for a few minutes.

It was pristine. The bench seats were still covered in plastic and the cars looked unsullied by the hazings of rush hour.

Now, this was the only sign I've seen of such a thing on my line, but here's hoping...

March 23, 2009

Atlantic Avenue Tunnel Tour

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I climbed down the manhole fighting many anxieties and my better judgment. Thankfully, I didn't have a lot of time to consider it as there were dozens of others behind me waiting to get down there too.

This was the Atlantic Avenue Tunnel Tour, which has recently begun again after a long hiatus. Despite my fears of falling into the depths below, I've really wanted to take this tour for a long time.

The tunnel itself is the oldest known subway tunnel. 45 feet below street level, it served the Long Island Railroad in it's first incarnation as a way to ferry goods to and from New York Harbor to the Long Island Sound. The Sound was the gateway to New England and, more importantly, the shipping lanes to Europe that started in Boston.

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Along with Eric & Marni, Tammi and I took the 2 hour tour led by Bob Diamond. Diamond discovered the tunnel in the early 80's after it had been hidden for nearly a century. He tells a juicy story of history, politics and corruption, Brooklyn-stlye about how the tunnel was built, hidden and became the source of lore for decades afterward.

There have been many unsubstantiated plans through the years for the tunnel, so it's unclear what, if anything is going to be done with this historic landmark, but until something actually develops, it's great to be able to walk deep into Brooklyn's history.

The tours book up quickly, so check the Brooklyn Historic Railway Association's website for dates and make a reservation in advance. The next available tour is on April 19th.

March 12, 2009

The MTA's March Madness

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I don't think I'm going to lose any friends by calling the MTA a bunch of bastards. I'm not the first and I won't be the last to speak ill of the folks running Transit, so I'll minimize my invective.

For the entire month of March, the A Train is being replaced by shuttle service for over 3 miles of its route in Brooklyn. From Jay Street to Utica Avenue. Practically, this means that trying to get anywhere downtown or into Manhattan is going to be a clusterfuck for another 4 weekends. They've done this before and it has been profoundly unpleasant.

The upshot of this for me is that these are 'Williamsburg' weekends, as heading in that direction by bus or bike is a far better experience than even attempting to navigate the foolishness on Fulton Street.

July 28, 2008

Photo of the Day: Twilight on Atlantic Ave


IMG_6949, originally uploaded by ultraclay!.

Boerum Hill, Brooklyn. 2008

July 27, 2008

Graffiti of the Day: Faded Plasma Board in BK


IMG_6946, originally uploaded by ultraclay!.

Boerum Hill, Brooklyn. 2008.

May 28, 2008

What's Old is New Again on the A Train


IMG_8754, originally uploaded by ultraclay!.

For the uninitiated, please excuse the subway geekery, for the subway geeks, please excuse the lack of precision. I'm into subways enough to notice when the MTA changes hardware, but not enough to memorize model numbers.

In the last few weeks, I've been seeing this relic circulating around the A line, my local train. The first time ,I thought it was a part of a movie shoot at Hoyt & Schermerhorn, where I believe they have been shooting parts of the Taking of Pelham 123. But then I started seeing it again and again to the point that I'm seeing them almost everyday now.

i mei on Flickr posted some shots of one and we've discussed this sudden mystery, but neither of us has any clue to it's reappearance.

It's an odd thing, because I haven't really seen this model around in years, yet suddenly it's back in rotation. I have to wonder if this is a money-saving attempt on the MTA's part. I'm all for it if it means more trains in the schedule, but somehow I expect the answer to be less in the interest of the riders than that.

May 26, 2008

The Tour de Brooklyn 2008


IMG_9304, originally uploaded by ultraclay!.

Yesterday, Tammi, her nephew Glenn and I rode in the Tour de Brooklyn, a 18 mile ride starting in DUMBO and running through Brooklyn Heights, Prospect Heights, Crown Heights, Bushwick, Williamsburg, down the waterfront through the Navy Yards (more on that in a bit) and back to DUMBO, ending in Walt Whitman Park near the entrance to the Brooklyn Bridge.

Between the ride to and from the event and the tour itself, we rode nearly 30 miles. Shockingly, I'm not too sore from the whole thing. The ride was great for the most part. I got to see neighborhoods I'd never really been to before and make geographical connections between areas, which is one of my favorite things about riding.

Continue reading "The Tour de Brooklyn 2008" »

February 26, 2008

Photo of the Day: Credit


IMG_4861, originally uploaded by ultraclay!.

Downtown Brooklyn. 2007.
::c::

February 6, 2008

Photo of the Day: Go-Go


IMG_7190, originally uploaded by ultraclay!.

Last Exit
Atlantic Antic, Brooklyn Heights, Brooklyn. 2007.
::c::

October 23, 2007

Cask Ale on The Pour

The Pour, Eric Asimov's blog on nytimes.com has a post today about cask ales. He mentions Alex Hall, formerly of the Gotham Imbiber.

Check it out.

Also, don't forget the cask ale festival at The Brazen Head next weekend..

In other

October 2, 2007

Cask Ale Time at The Brazen Head


IMG_7036, originally uploaded by ultraclay!.

Just a quick note that while at the Antic, I found that the next cask ale festival at the Brazen Head will be the weekend of November 2-4th. Clearly, I'm planning on attending.

Atlantic Antic 2007


IMG_6988, originally uploaded by ultraclay!.

Sunday was a great Brooklyn day. Tammi and I waded through the crowds at Atlantic Antic and enjoyed good food and great company all day.

We met up with with various friends and randomly bumped into others. I had a thick, juicy sirloin slider from Donna Da Vine a newish wine bar that Tammi and I have started going to.

We also had some fantastic pork sandwiches made from the two whole pigs Jolie roasted. They were served on long narrow rolls and served with a mildly tangy horseradish mayonnaise.

And at a friend's urging we tried out fried oreos, which were a little weird. I was expecting something along the lines of the deep friend twinkie or chocolate bar often found at brit style chip shops. Instead, owing to the vendor selling them - an Italian Sausage truck - it was more like a zeppole, thick and doughy and covered in powdered sugar.

The one thing I didn't get that I miss is the shwarma usually served by a middle eastern food supply shop near clinton. They don't sell food at all most of the year and, invariably, it's the best I've had. By the time we ended up on that end of the Antic, I couldn't really contemplate eating much more.

When we were done, we hung out at an after party hosted by Robert and Mary, who live nearby.

All in all a really great day. See the rest of the Antic photos here.

And here for my extended description of the festival from last year.


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