Tickets Still Available! Herbalism Workshop at Calabar Imports

Local community leader, activist, and herbalist, Gerard Miller, will be presenting a workshop this Saturday 11/10 at Calabar Imports in Bed-Stuy.  Miller will both discuss the rich history of earth-based healing and plant medicine and explore the practices in practical, hands-on ways.  Participants will prepare 4 simple formulas with common herbs & essential oils and other easily-accessible ingredients, including a nourishing body scrub, a tincture, an infused oil, and an oxymel.

The workshop will also include a discussion of origins, properties, and uses of each plant; as well as variations to begin personalizing your medicine moving forward. Also discussed will be the history and modern social issues around herbalism, traditional wisdom-keeping, and cultural appropriation.

Tickets are still available here. Don’t miss out!

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ArtLinks 3: A New Kind of Art Exhibition

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Imagine a game of telephone that uses works of art instead of a phrase or word. That’s what ArtLinks is – an ongoing collaborative project that brings together over 20 artists across disciplines and countries to create a continuous thread of innovation and artistry. Six months in the making – this is a one of a kind event.

Twenty three artists from across the globe have been working together to create one unending chain reaction of creativity. Every pair or trio of artists, in turn, had ten days to create something new inspired by the work of the pair that preceded them. None of the artists had worked together in the past, and all of the works are multidisciplinary.

The ArtLinks 3 Exhibition is presented by Salomé ArtHaus, a local artist collective, on Saturday, June 23rd from 6-11 pm in Bushwick, Brooklyn at Powrplnt (562 Evergreen Ave). Tickets are available online ($10 –> includes a free drink) or at the door ($12)

Featured artists:
Yaniv Glaser & Benjamin Furman
Sasha Daniel & Maha Alasaker
Tongues Unknown & Jared Rosen
Mor Cohen & Darryl Blake Rahn & Michal Hidas
Taylor Bradshaw & Sienna Rose Kat Blaw & Devon Yesberger
Sebastian Chiriboga & Laura Gatti
Pamela Hersch & Maya Valentine
Kieran Murray & Ronit Levin Delgado Rojas & Astrid Kuljanic
Evan Tyor & 魯千千 (Chien Chien Lu)
Tom Vizel & Mikhal Weiner

Bed-Stuy’s WOC Book Club Will Meet June 20th and 23rd

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Bed-Stuy’s WOC (Women of Color) Book Club is an initiative led by local resident Beatriz Kaye. For the past few months, the Book Club has been gathering monthly to discuss timely and pertinent books by Women of Color. According to Kaye, “the meetings are open to WOC and Queer Trans People of Color – it is a safe space to discuss books, literature, and more.”

This month, the Book Club read ‘Not That Bad’, essays about rape culture edited by Roxane Gay. Join the discussion! This month’s meetings are either on Wednesday the 20th, 7pm at Nostrand Cafe (261 Nostrand Ave.) or Saturday the 23rd, 1pm at MacDonough Cafe (83 Saratoga Ave.) Find out more about upcoming events by following the Book Club on Instagram @bedstuybookclub

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Bed-Stuy Stories: Gloria Sandiford, Advocate and Real Estate Broker

GloriaBed-Stuy Blog’s newest contributor, Mikhal Weiner, is profiling interesting residents from our community for her column, Bed-Stuy Stories. Next up is Gloria Sandiford, a community activist, Real Estate Broker at Flateau Realty Corp, and president of the Bedford-Stuyvesant Real Estate Board.

If you open Gloria Sandiford’s StreetEasy profile you’ll find yourself looking into her intelligent eyes, as they beam at the camera. Underneath, a short blurb explains that she is a “Brooklynite for Life! Community advocate and activist. Deep respect and admiration for arts & culture,” but most importantly: “My service policy: knowledge, trust, honesty, integrity & top-notch service, with a little humor!” In truth, Sandiford is all this and more. We met recently at Grandchamps, a local Bed-Stuy haven of Haitian cuisine. Sandiford walked in, shaking off an umbrella, and immediately took in the room with a warm smile. Calling the servers ‘honey’ and asking how they are, she made everyone’s day brighter.

Our conversation covered a wide swath of topics, but throughout her eclectic adventuresGloria2 one thread has remained consistent and strong: people, and the connections between them. “[The] word community encompasses so many different things,” she told me, considering the idea as she spoke, “The people, the processes, the leadership. The good, the bad, and the ugly. Schools, education, children, seniors, it’s all a part of that word community.” That’s where her passion lies, in helping the public become it’s best self, whether through advocacy, outreach, education, or simply buying groceries for an elderly neighbor.

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Marcy Library Reopened This Week After an 18-Month Renovation

marcy library, bed-stuy, bed-stuy library, marcy library reopening, Council member robert Cornergy

Earlier this week Council Member Robert Cornegy, Jr. joined the Brooklyn Public Library to celebrate the re-opening of Marcy Library, located right off Dekalb. The branch had been closed for 18 months. During that time, there was a $1.5 million renovation to install a new heating, ventilation and air-conditioning system. On top of that, the BPL refreshed and modernized the library with paint, new tables, chairs and shelving, additional computers, enhanced lighting and signage. There’s also a modernized children’s area with new furniture and an interactive activity wall.

According to the BPL, over the next 10 years one third of BPL’s system (including Marcy Library) will have been rebuilt or renovated.

Councilman Cornegy, who kicked off the re-opening celebration by reading a story to kindergarten and first grade classes from PS 54, called the Marcy Library “a great resource to the people of Bedford Stuyvesant and Crown Heights for over 100 years,” adding, “It was important to me to ensure the funding necessary to make these upgrades was provided. I am extremely pleased to see it reopened today with improved facilities and even more tools to facilitate learning.”

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Photos by Fritzi Bodenheimer for BPL

Art Event Happening Friday on Border of Bed-Stuy and Bushwick

The local arts collective Salomé ArtHaus is hosting an interesting event this Friday at 562 Evergreen Avenue, technically in Bushwick but not far from our neighborhood. Their project, called ArtLinks, pairs together artists who create in different disciplines. For five months the artists worked with strangers to create artworks that respond to the work made proceeding it. Now, the chain is complete, and Salomé is exhibiting the works and the process inside the Bushwick gallery. The collective said that from this chain “emerged serious, poignant works that evoke thoughts about the meaning of communication and cooperation across artistic genres and global boundaries.” The exhibition, the first for Salomé ArtHaus, includes 23 artists and 10 different pieces.

Tickets cost $7 online and $10 at the door–buy them here. And here are event details on Facebook.

Nine-Year-Old Bed-Stuy Resident Wins Service Award from NYMetroParents

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At the beginning of 2017 NYMetroParents, the parenting division of Davler Media Group, announced its first-ever “Caring Kids Awards.” According to the publication,”the honor was established to celebrate children and families who have made extraordinary contributions to their communities via a wide range of volunteer and community service efforts.” And a young Bed-Stuy resident was honored! Her name is Taelynn-Marie Porter, age nine, and she was selected from over 100 submissions for volunteer and community service projects undertaken by kids in NYC, Rockland and Westchester counties and Long Island. She has won a framed certificate, a $500 award and editorial coverage in the magazine. Here’s what she has been up to in Bed-Stuy:

Nine-year-old Taelynn-Marie has been volunteering with her family’s nonprofit foundation GOTI since she was six. Her mother founded GOTI three years ago, and Taelynn-Marie has been a vital part of its success and impact on her Brooklyn community ever since. Each year, the young girl and her family feed families at the Albemarle Family Shelter Thanksgiving Dinner, and also provide Christmas gifts and breakfast to all 200 children there. Taelynn-Marie has served food, wrapped gifts, decorated trees and donated time and service to the homeless families year after year without complaint. She even traveled with her family to Haiti on a mission trip to paint houses and plant trees when she was seven. Taelynn-Marie has served others without expecting anything in return and finds joy in doing so. She is shaping up to be a true servant leader.

Michael Kress, editor of NYMetroParents, called all seven winners “extraordinary role models, ones who demonstrate the true value and rewards of giving back to others.”