Monthly Archives: May 2010

FABfest: Weekend Walks Coming to Fulton Street

Exciting news!  DOT’s cool Weekend Walks program, which creates temporary pedestrian streets for recreation and education, is coming to Fulton Street!  The FAB Alliance will be hosting the event on Sundays during the month of June.

We’ll be posting the weekend schedule every Friday on CHB.  I have to say, the events look pretty awesome.  Here’s the official press release.

For Immediate Release
Contact: Phillip Kellogg, Manager / FAB Alliance
May 23, 2010

FABfest, a month-long three-block street festival, jumpstarts Brooklyn
summertime fun, featuring fashion shows, reggae and gospel concerts,
chef demonstrations, activities for kids, dance parties, author readings,
community mural painting, and a tribute to Michael Jackson

Headlining artists include Victor LaValle, Urban Word Poets, DJ Reborn,
Jahdan Blakkamore, Geka Jones, and Matt Shadetek of Dutty Artz
Free Outdoor Festival—Sundays, 12noon—6pm, June 6 through 27,
on Fulton Street between Lafayette Avenue and South Oxford Street,
in Fort Greene, Brooklyn

Presented by the FAB Alliance, the newly formed Fulton Street Business
Improvement District in Clinton Hill and Fort Greene. FABfest is part of the
NYC DOT Weekend Walks program.

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Friday Photo: Ft Greene History Edition

A local resident for nearly 30 years and one-time chair of the Fort Greene Association, Howard Pitsch recently published a fascinating pictorial history of the neighborhood.  For the next six Fridays, we’ll be posting images from his book.  The Local will also feature some of the book’s photography, but CHB will be posting its own unique set of imagery from the book.


Horses, the unrequited and often abused heroes of wagons and carriages, did not pose for this picture when everyone had to “freeze” for the slow shutter speed.  In 1860, Vandergaw was at the junction of Fulton Street and DeKalb Avenue, probably where the Dime Savings Bank stands today. The buildings in the background are not identified, although the center one would appear to be a church.  (Courtesy Roger Whitehouse collection.  From “Fort Greene” by Howard Pitsch, Foreword by Paul Palazzo, Arcadia Publishing, 2010, $22.  Available online:

CHB Finally Visits Urban Vintage

urban vintage

I know, I slacked big time on this one.  I missed their small preview and then hadn’t made time to go check them out after the grand opening.  But I finally made it last weekend and boy am I glad I did!  Urban Vintage is GORGEOUS!  I love the combination of merchandise and retail.  The bright, spacious shop is stylish and comfortable, and the owners Elizabeth and Emily Hazelwood couldn’t be any nicer.

urban vintage owners

Urban Vintage is closed on Saturdays, which seems like an odd choice given the crowds just down the block at Choice (and the limited seating there).  However, they’re closed so they can host private events on Saturdays.  And let me tell you, I would have loved to do my bridal shower there had they been open last summer.  Keep it in mind.

I didn’t check the prices of all of the home furnishings, but the stuff I looked at was surprisingly reasonable.  Like this cute clothespin-inspired garbage bag holder for less than $30:

garbage bag holder

What an awesome way to re-purpose a small plastic bag as a garbage bag and make it look cool!  I’ll be back for this, for sure.

The Local’s covered it here and reviewed some of the food.

Urban Vintage
294 Grand Avenue

Piano Lessons on Hall Street

piano lessons

I’ve always loved this house on Hall Street, just south of Myrtle.  The windows have custom ironwork and the front walk has a trellis covered in climbing roses.

The house is home to the Clinton Hill School for Piano, run by Jim Porter.  While his website does say he teaches beginners and children, it looks to be mostly a school for advanced students.  Have you taken a lesson here? What do you think about the school’s philosophy?

Clinton Hill Garden Walk

Check out some of the neighborhood’s most wonderful private gardens on this upcoming walking tour:

Brownstone Brooklyn Garden District presents its self-guided 13th Annual Garden Walk. Spend a Sunday afternoon being inspired by the creativity of this neighborhood’s urban gardeners. The stops on the tour include single, double and triple-lot city refuges. Pick up a self-guided map at the corner of Washington Avenue and Lafayette, just outside the entrance to the G train, and enter into a a wonderland that cannot be seen from the street.

This year’s stroll features 15 private gardens in the historic district of Clinton Hill, Brooklyn. In addition to private gardens, many of which also feature the artwork of their creators folded into their greenery, the tour includes several vibrant community gardens, a newly planted garden entitled, Symbols, Parables and Healing, sponsored by BBGD in partnership with Teen Challenge, the drug recovery and prevention program at 444 Clinton Avenue, The Pratt sculpture Garden, green graffiti art installations and a Living-Couture Fashion Show in a neighborhood church.

All proceeds from the Garden Walk fund activities that support, encourage and facilitate local gardening, urban farming and environmental art.

Tickets are available in advance for $15 at:

and for $20 the day of the event.

Pet Stores: A Comparison

There’s been a lot of internet chatter both here and on the Local about how the neighborhood now has “too many pet stores.”  I don’t disagree necessarily, but I don’t want to wish failure on the new guy just because I’d rather see something else in the space.  Plus, as someone who often buys heavy pet care items (cat litter), and has both a cat and a dog, I’m all for competition if it means the prices, stock and service gets better.  Not to mention an option close-by.

So which store is the best overall? I decided to stop at every local pet store (and a few grocery stores) to compare prices on some of the items I buy most to see which shop was Top Dog.

Here’s what I was looking for:


  • Wellness dry food, small (47 oz) or medium (6lb)
  • Feline Pine cat litter, 7lb bag
  • Wee Wee Pads, 50-count

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