05/01/15 6:09am

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If you’ve been following the elementary school overcrowding situation at the local P.S. 8 school in Brooklyn Heights (where Dumbo residents are also zoned), you know that many parents of kindergarden classes are frustrated and worried that their children are wait listed. The Department of Education cut a full kindergarten class from P.S. 8 to alleviate the overcrowding for the first time in its history.

The school currently has six kindergarten classes with space for 150 students, will eliminate 25 seats in the 2015-16 school year — and there are currently 207 applications for kindergarten, according to parents and members of the PTA.

With the growing number of residents in the area, the schools have reached capacity and parents have asked local politicians and school administration to address longer term solutions in a Change.org petition.

Follow more news about P.S. 8 overcrowding:
DOE Cuts 25 Kindergarten Seats at Brooklyn Heights School

Here’s Why Your Brooklyn Heights 5 Year Old Might Be Turned Away From P.S. 8 This Fall, Brooklynheightsblog

Change.org petition

04/28/15 11:59am

P.S. Bookshop, a neighborhood bookstore in Dumbo Brooklyn that buys and sells used and rare books, is at risk of going out of business. The shop was presented by its landlord with a $40,000 bill of unpaid real estate tax dating back to 2010, according to. P.S. Bookshop’s crowd funding campaign on Indiegogo.com. Speaking to Yuval Gans, owner of the store, it is clear he has invested his own funds and passion into the store and serving the community. While he was diligent to inquire about the tax payments after beginning his lease in May 2010, he was not made aware that the tax was accruing. While it sounds like the possible closing of an independent book seller to be another cliché of gentrification, Mr. Gans knows many families and patrons in the area, and hopes to serve the community for many years to come.

“I’ve invested too much hard work making P.S. the bookshop it is, I must fight for its survival.” Mr. Gans’ popular Story Time has been introducing the joy of books to neighborhood kids for the past nine years. “My bookshop’s mission is to educate, inspire and stimulate minds, as well as provide a much needed outlet for collectors and book lovers. I hope that in pursuing these goals I have acquired enough support for my cause. Unfortunately,” he adds, “paying the tax arrears merely begs the question of the bookshop’s future in Dumbo’s real estate tax market.”

In an attempt to answer this question Mr. Gans got in touch with the owner of one of the city’s best known bakeries who is very interested in setting up a coffee shop at the bookshop, hoping to open this spring. The solution could provide a perfect key for securing P.S Bookshop’s future. Unfortunately, the shop’s landlord denied Mr. Gans’ request to pursue this plan. The reason quoted is the competition that the proposed coffee shop may present to other of the landlord’s current tenants.

To follow and to learn how you can help save P.S. Bookshop visit:
psbookshop.info

P.S. Bookshop (psbookshopnyc.com)
76 Front Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Tel: 718-222-3340

04/28/15 8:00am

GlobaLenzGirls Photography Exhibit

Join #GlobaLenzGirls, the premier of photographer Chloe Louvouezo, at an intimate receptionist exhibit in Dumbo, Brooklyn. The event is free and open to the public. Food and wine will be sponsored by Taste of Ethiopia. Through a lens of global citizenship, Chloe shares a candid and colorful reflection of the radiance of people and places with which she connects. In this photography series, she captures the vibrancy of women and girls in her travels to Cuba, Rwanda, Ethiopia, and Kenya. Collectively, these photos tell the story of love, humility and fatigue.

04/27/15 5:49pm

Recess Dumbo

An indoor children’s playspace is opening at 81 Washington Street in Dumbo this summer (corner of York and Washington Streets). Recess Dumbo is a 1200+ square foot main play area with all custom-designed and built play structures. The space was formerly occupied by Pomme, a children’s boutique until it closed its Dumbo location in May 2013.

According to the owners, the structures were designed to fit with the aesthetic of the space, which has exposed bricks and original wood beams. There are plans for stainless steel slides, climbing tubes made of natural-colored netting and other climbing and play structures. There will also be a separate area appropriate for kids under two, and a classroom for programming (offered during the week, as well as Saturday and Sunday mornings). The classroom will double as an event room for birthday parties (after hours and weekend afternoons).

While the playspace is appropriate for kids ages 6 months to 6 years, there are plans to offer after school programming to kids up to age 8.

There will be memberships to the playspace that offer a flexible, unlimited drop-in model to our members, as well as some other perks, including offers for weekend events and limited drop-off options.

For programming, there will be music, dance, art and yoga teachers as well as collaboration with some established professionals like Child’s Play NY (theatrical arts), Chess at 3, and Language Beans (Mandarin language programs) who will offer their programming in the space. They plan to offer a mini-session in late June through July and start a full semester of programming in September. With more and more parents of young children in the neighborhood, Recess Dumbo is a welcome addition.

Recess Dumbo (recessdumbo.com)
81 Washington Street, Brooklyn NY 11201
email: info@recessdumbo.com

04/24/15 7:05am
Photo courtesy Brooklyn Bridge Park Boathouse facebook page

Photo courtesy Brooklyn Bridge Park Boathouse facebook page

Brooklyn Bridge Park Boathouse, a 501c3 non-profit has announced their public schedule for the 2015 season, as well their push to recruit new volunteers. The boathouse will open on June 6th at 10AM, and go through Labor Day Weekend. They will be open every Saturday from 10:00AM to 3:00PM and Thursday from 5:30PM to 6:45PM. They’ll be running kayak polo on Sundays at 11AM for kids and 12:30PM for adults. “Keep an eye on Tuesday nights as well, because if we get enough volunteers, we may sneak in an unannounced extra weeknight here and there.”

Last year, the boathouse set a record by putting nearly 6,000 free paddlers on the water and they’re hoping to do even more this season. They will need the community’s help:

We’re actively looking for new volunteers. Our group is 100% volunteer run. We don’t get any money from the city or Parks Department, so we rely on the dozens of volunteers that enable our program to run. It doesn’t necessarily involve any kayaking, but if you wanted to learn, it’s a great way to get experience. We have positions for paddlers and non-paddlers alike. Sign up on our mailing list to find out how to become a volunteer here: bbpboathouse.org/volunteer-with-us

We’re throwing a fundraiser on May 14th at Brooklyn Roasting: eventbrite.com/e/brooklyn-bridge-park-boathouse-annual-fundraising-party-tickets-16488788410. It’s the perfect opportunity to socialize with your fellow kayaking enthusiasts, have a drink or two (on us!), and win some seriously awesome raffle prizes—like access to a class where you can learn to make your own beer. What could be better? That all proceeds from this event will keep our programs running all summer long and are totally tax-deductible for you! If you can’t make it, you can still donate to our cause: bbpboathouse.org/donate. We’re hoping to raise $10,000 this year to keep our programs free to the public.

Brooklyn Bridge Boathouse is located at the Brooklyn Bridge Park between Piers 1 and 2.

04/22/15 10:00am

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