Friday, July 28, 2006

My Neighborhood

I am no longer visiting bars on as regular a basis as before, who could. However I still visit interesting places on occasion, and I live in an interesting neighborhood. Well, it is interesting to me, at least. I thought I would change the direction of this blog a bit and start posting more on things and places that I find to be interesting, mostly in the area around where I live, Downtown Brooklyn, and the surrounding neighborhoods. Of course if I do visit a new bar I will certainly post on that as well. Let me know what you think about this idea.

Gowanus Yacht Club

While out for a morning walked I passed by the Gowanus Yacht Club prior to its opening for the day. This is a decent place to pop into for a cold beer and a hamburger or a hotdog. They have cheap PBRs and a decent selection of more exotic brews, all served in plastic cups. You can get pitchers too. They also have trivia contests for your amusement and enrichment.

The Specials

You can find this outdoor on a cement slab with picnic tables and umbrellas place at the corner of Smith and President Streets. You can get there on the F or G train (there is a stop right next to it) or just take almost any train to Boro Hall and walk up the ever entertaining Smith Street. This neighborhood is Carroll Gardens although there is a move underway to rename it BoCoCa for the three adjacent neighborhoods of Boerum Hill, Cobble Hill, and Carroll Gardens. Resist the urge to use this name at all costs. It is absolutely stupid and unnecessary.

Not too far away, but far enough away so you can't smell it while sipping your beer, is the infamous Gowanus Canal. One day this may be a very upscale neighborhood itself. You could have a marina and boats can get out to the ocean from it. Right now it is still pretty industrialized and smelly at times. There has been talk of dredging it out, but there is so much chemical waste and stuff that there is a concern about how safe dredging would be.

The Gowanus Canal used to be a creek but it was made into a canal and became a major commercial waterway used to transport cement, oil and coal during the 1800's. A number of cement factories and coal and oil depost still line it. A flushing system was installed but for many years it didn't work and there is no natural outlet to the canal other than the one into the ocean. Supposedly the flushing system is now working again and water is clearing up somewhat. A study is underway to decide weather or not to do a major upgrade to the system down the road a bit.

Views From The Bridge

Looking South Towards Red Hook

Looking North Towards Downtown

There are a few art galleries opening up along here and at least one performance place, Issue Project Room at 400 Carroll Street between Bond and Nevins. This evening and tomorrow evening the School of Hard Knocks dance troupe is putting on a 7 hour piece along the banks of the canal. You could join or visit the Gowanus Dredgers Canoe Club if you wanted to get a more up-close look.