Brownstoners of Bedford-Stuyvesant is Hosting its Annual House Tour This Saturday

Unfortunately I’m out of town this weekend or I would not be missing the Brownstoners of Bedford-Stuyvesant annual house tour. It’s their 39th tour showcasing some of the most spectacular architecture in the neighborhood. And yes, you get to go inside and tour the homes!

The event begins at the Boys and Girls High School, 1700 Fulton Street. And the tour lasts from 11am until 4pm. (Get the full event details here.) It looks like pre-order tickets, which were selling for $20, are sold out. Day-of tickets costing $25 can be purchased at the door.


First Full Production for the Newly Renovated Billie Holiday Theatre Opens This Month

Billie Holiday Theater

The newly-renovated Billie Holiday Theatre is launching its 46th season this month with the production of The Old Settler, which was written by Brooklyn-born playwright John Henry Redwood and features veteran performers of the theater like Pauletta Pearson Washington (of Two Trains Running, Autumn), Denise Burse (Brownsville Song: b side for Trey, House of Payne, Black Mirror, Greenleaf), and Warner Miller (Luke Cage). The team is joined by newcomer and Juilliard graduate Maechi Aharanwa (of An Octoroon). Here’s the synopsis offered by the theater:

Set in 1943 Harlem, The Old Settler focuses on two sisters’ struggle to afford their rising rent. Faced with a choice between giving up their apartment and renting out their extra room to a stranger, they decide to take a chance on a boarder, newly arrived from the South. In equal measures funny and poignant, The Old Settler is a glimpse into the heart of an American City.

The Old Settler will run from October 20th to November 19th of this year. Tickets are available at Subscriptions to the 2017-2018 season are also on sale by calling 718-636-6995 or by visiting the website.

The Billie Holiday Theatre (aka The Billie) was founded in 1972 by Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation and showcases works by and about people of African descent, with three to four productions annually. It’s located at 1368 Fulton Street, between Marcy and Tompkins.

Info Session Coming Up for Block Association Grants

Bed-Stuy has no shortage of amazing block associations, so this meeting next Tuesday, October 17th might be of interest to many in the neighborhood. This is from Assemblywoman Diana Richardson:

I encourage you to take advantage of Citizens Committee for New York City’s Grant Information Session on Tuesday, October 17, 2017. This event will take place St Francis De Sales School for the Deaf at 260 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn, New York 11225.

The aforementioned grants directly benefit the community by funding public projects, like community gardens, at a grassroots level. This event is FREE and open to the public. Utilize this free resource to aid your block association.

If you require information or need to RSVP feel free to call Raul Rothblatt, at 718-284-4700.

Mayoral Debate Watch Party Happening Tomorrow at Restoration Plaza

This Tuesday, October 10th, Restoration Plaza (at 1360 Fulton Street) will host a live stream of the first mayoral debate in the 2017 General Election. It’s an entire evening of activities before the viewing party: starting at 5pm you’ll be able to register to vote, listen to music spun by DJ Selly, enjoy food sold by local vendors and learn about ID NYC, civic engagement, local plazas, parks and more.

Then at 7pm, watch the live stream of the mayoral debate between candidates Bill de Blasio, Nicole Malliotakis, and Bo Dietl on Restoration Plaza’s large video screen.

Find all the event details on Facebook.

Don’t Miss Upcoming Events at the Hattie Carthan Community Garden Farmers Markets

Did you know Bed-Stuy has a weekend farmer’s market that is part of a grassroots, POC-led agricultural revitalization project based here in the neighborhood? The Hattie Carthan Community Garden–once a vacant, toxic plot of land–has been transformed into a full-on garden on the corner of Lafayette and Marcy. They’re growing enough that there are now two weekend farmer’s markets that also host regular events.

The first takes place on Saturdays, 9am to 3pm, right next to the garden on Clifton Street between Nostrand and Marcy. The second is on Sundays, between 1pm and 6pm, on Van Buren Street between Tompkins and Throop.

Local kids works the stands, and there are a number of community events rooted in various food justice and social principles like sustainability, culture and community. Upcoming events include a bread baking class (in the farm’s clay oven), a Life and Death dia de Los Muertos celebration, and communal farm dinners. To check out upcoming events, go here! And you can like and follow the farm on Facebook here.

Photos courtesy of the Hattie Carthan Community Garden

E-Waste Collection and Puerto Rico Donations This Saturday on Halsey Street

You might have caught the clothing donation stand outside 462 Halsey Community Farm last Saturday. Well, this Saturday the farm is hosting two events: e-waste recycling as well as a collection for critically needed supplies for friends and families in Puerto Rico.

E-Waste collection will take working and non-working computers, monitors, printers, scanners, keyboards, mice, cables, tvs, VCRs, DVD players, batteries, phones, audio/visual equipment, cellphones and PDAs. Throwing away electronics is illegal and could result in a fine, so go here instead!

The collection for Puerto Rico is ONLY accepting these items: diapers, baby food, batteries, first aid supplies and feminine hygiene products. All donated items must be non-perishable, not second-hand, nor contain any liquids of any kind. Open or unsealed donations of food or hygiene supplies will not be accepted. Wet wipes will also not be accepted. Any other items will be returned.

Both events are taking place this Saturday September 30th, between 10am and 4pm. The location is 462 Halsey, between Marcus Garvey and Lewis.

The Mixtape Shop, a New Cafe and Record Store, has Opened on Bedford Avenue

The Mixtape Shop, 1129 bedford avenue

There’s a new cafe and record store at 1129 Bedford Avenue, between Monroe and Madison, called The Mixtape Shop. The business began as an online store in February of 2016, specializing in independent and underground music. Now, the brick and mortar record shop also features a café serving espresso from Intelligentsia, Bien Cuit pastries and a selection of cold drinks. In the fall, there are plans to expand to a more extensive food menu.

“We wanted to create a space where people can spend time hanging out and listening to music with a welcoming vibe for people who don’t normally go into record shops,” co-owner Erica Roden said in a press release. The release also said this about the music selection: “The record shop offers a range of recent releases, rare original pressings and reissued albums and LP’s with new titles every week. The inventory favors a curated selection of house, soul, disco, techno, Brazilian and jazz music.”

This storefront has been vacant for years, and was designed into a functional, simple space that could easily be transformed for weekend or evening events. It’s equipped with Klipschorn speakers and multiple listening stations, too.

If you’d like to visit, The Mixtape Shop is open seven days a week. The cafe runs between 8am and 4pm, while the record shop is open between noon and 8pm.