- Thursday – 9pm-2am – DJ Lamb Rabbit @ Bedvyne Cocktail
- Friday Night – Live Sculpting Night with model Leah @ Art Shack ($20)
- Friday 9-11:
30pm– bill, still (the music of bill withers w/ ethan eubanks& irving louis lattin) @ LunAtico
- Saturday 7pm-10pm Empress Evenings @ Make Manifest
- Saturday 11pm-4am – Rich Medina – House, Rare Grooves, Garage Classics @ C’mon Everybody
- Put your resolutions in action with Carl Bernard from Incredible Molding Fitness
- Thursday 9-11:30pm – Ben Allison Quartet tributes Herbie Nichols 100th birthday @ LunAtico
- Friday 11pm – Let’s Dance: A David Bowie Party @ C’mon Everybody
- Saturday 1-3:30pm – Tea Blends & Therapeutic Bath Salts Workshop @ Calabar Imports
- Sunday – Get a rejuvenating/detox Juice @ The Bush Doctor Juice Bar
I am very excited to announce our first sponsor for Bed-Stuy Local – the Altschuler Bartolucci Team (aka Rachel and Nadia) at Douglas Elliman!!
I’m so happy to have my good friend Nadia as our sponsor because she really embodies the values of Bed-Stuy Local, someone who is always hustling, who is trustworthy, and is there to help the community.
Nadia and Rachel work in Manhattan and Brooklyn and know Bed-Stuy inside and out. So if you have real-estate needs, buying, selling or renting, please reach out to Nadia or Rachel.
And, another reason that I’m excited about this is that the funding that they are supporting Bed-Stuy Local with will go right back into growing and improving Bed-Stuy Local.
I am going to keep improving the website’s technology and ramp up the content as well. So, if you know any writers in Bed-Stuy who are passionate about the community, please send them my way!
What’s your name and what do you do?
We have four names! Robert, Tim, Marek and Davis.
During the day, Robert is a video producer who runs a Brooklyn-based live event production company called SHOWSTRE.AM, Tim curates interactive experiences, Marek works in operations at a startup and Davis writes multiple choice questions.
At night, we are super producers and use our connections with artists and performers to showcase upcoming as well as established talent from Bed-Stuy and surrounding neighborhoods.
What is Cherry!?
Cherry! is a variety show typically featuring stand-up comedy, drag performances and musical acts once a week during our regular season—we provide a queer-friendly/forward and engaging experience that everyone can enjoy.
How long has it been going on for?
We just finished our first weekly series in Fall 2018 which lasted 10 weeks. We also produced a special one-off Christmas episode called A Very Cherry! Christmas in December.
What’s the craziest thing that’s ever happened at one of your shows?
What should people expect from a typical show?
A local drag artist usually hosts and performs throughout the evening. We typically have two comedians—their acts range from classic stand-up to musical numbers to audience participation. In terms of music, we’ve had experimental pop, opera and acoustic performances.
There are a variety of skill levels and years-of-experience represented as well. We’ve had classically trained opera and musical theater singers alongside amateur favorites like the ukulele player, Sam.
Cherry! has also been several comedians’ first booked show—which amazes us because EVERYONE has been great. Cherry! was also the first time rising stars Vivica Galactica and Sinnamon Bunz hosted shows in New York, which is humbling given their level of talent.
Can you list five to ten acts (with links) that perform at the show?
We have many more! But here is a random sampling:
- David Perez
- Kendall Payne
- Kyle Turner
- Brian Mummert
- Pete Sturman
- Griffin Leeds
- Christian Luu
- Blair Bitch
- Slam Granderson
Who is the most known/popular act?
We aren’t sure about most known (though Merrie Cherry, the Mother of Brooklyn Drag, just hosted a Very Cherry! Christmas), but, we’ve had a few that really stood out.
Philip Sparkle, Anne Cunningham and Franx blew our minds this season and we had them all back for our Three-Act Halloween show at The Holler. What they have to offer, we hadn’t really seen before. Their acts bridge comedy, performance art and music in ways that work great with our more unstructured format.
Who are the brightest up and coming acts for 2019?
Maybe someone reading this article!
What should people expect from Cherry in 2019? Any major plans to grow or change?
Our second season will probably run March through April with a few special shows here and there.
We want to leave room for growth (in terms of content and format) since we just started out. It would be great to expand our talent pool with poets/spoken word, dancers and burlesque/boylesque. We would love to find a magician!
It’s also important for us to continue to reach out to local talent. Bed-Stuy, like most of Brooklyn, is going through a lot of change, fast. Cherry! would probably not exist without the influx of residents who are new to the area.
But, we don’t want to overlook culture that already exists or pretend that we are representing all the talent in the area. It’s easy to ignore, in our day-to-day lives, the negative consequences of this change and the hardships/frustrations that it can bring to residents that have lived in the neighborhood for years and decades. Cherry! may not be the venue to solve policy issues related to gentrification, but, where we can, we would love to increasingly represent a more holistic view of the Bed-Stuy experience so that we aren’t operating in parallel communities defined by race, gender/sexual orientation or class.
There have been several occasions where patrons (intending to casually watch sports) were not expecting entertainment and possibly may have never seen a drag performance! In all cases, everyone eventually gelled and had a good time.
What venues are the shows at?
Cherry! isn’t confined to any one space. We alternated between Fulton Ale House and The Holler during season 1 and we would love to partner with a venue with a large stage (and maybe a piano) as well in 2019.
Where can people find you?
We have an Instagram account with photos/vids of past events. It is cherry_bedstuy.
Next year we’ll startup a Facebook page and maybe even a website. We didn’t know if this would last more than a few weeks! We are finding that there is an endless supply of talent … it’s Brooklyn isn’t it?
Selflessness in the Community
In my recent (yet to be released) podcast with David from Calaca, he told me a story about The Corners and Doris that represents the values of small businesses that we are so fortunate to have here in Bed-Stuy.
When David was reopening Calaca, he needed new permits for his restaurant. Part of that process required other, well-established businesses in the community to vouch for David’s character. He told me that The Corners and Doris wrote these amazing and inspirational letters on his behalf. He said that he still reads them today when he is down and needs a boost!
And, while I don’t know all of the details, it sounds like Calaca might not be around today if The Corners and Doris didn’t step up in the way that they did.
And lastly, they did so with no expectation of reciprocation, or even any recognition. It was truly a selfless act to help another business in our community.
For that reason, we want to recognize The Corners and Doris with our first ever Bed-Stuy Local award for selflessness in the community!
We thank you and I hope that everyone reading this makes an extra effort to go check out The Corners and Doris and support local businesses!
- Shop Local for all your gifts! Angl, Pipsqueak, the narativ, peace & RIOT, Make Manifest, and more….
- Thursday 7-10pm – DJ Spike TI vs DJ Leche @ Peaches (393 Lewis Ave)
- Friday 8pm – Los Cumpleaños w/ STEFA*, Starr Busby, & DJ’s Sonido Mixteco + Dayansiiita @ C’Mon Everybody – $10
- #4 Saturday 8:30pm – juke joint jelis feat. brianna thomas and greg lewis @ LunAtico
- #5 Sunday starting at 11:30am – Brunch at Cheri’s (just because!)
Today, we are posting our first small business profile! We plan on doing as many profiles as we can of small businesses in Bed-Stuy. If you know someone who we should profile, or if you would like to be profiled, please do not hesitate to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Who are the Brownstone Boys? Tell us about yourselves.
We’re Barry and Jordan aka The Brownstone Boys. Jordan is in marketing for Ample Hills Creamery and a food tour guide. Barry works for a startup software company. We met about 2 years ago. Barry has owned a few apartments over the past few years with the dream of buying and restoring a classic Brownstone. Jordan shared that dream so we decided to take this adventure together.
In one paragraph, describe what it is that you are doing.
We bought a 2 family brownstone in Bedstuy. It has many original details but it’s in need of restoration. We’re excited to make it our home. We are going to restore everything that we can and modernize where we need to. We’ll have a brand new open kitchen, a large master bedroom, completely renovated master bath, a new guest bath, and new parlor level backyard access with a deck.
How did you choose Bed-Stuy?
Barry has lived in Bedstuy for the past few years. It has become his favorite neighborhood that he has lived in. Jordan also fell in love with the architecture of the neighborhood (and Saraghina!) and ended up spending much of his time in Bedstuy when not at work. We chose Bedstuy because we love the neighborhood, the architecture is beautiful, the community feels welcoming, and it’s still a place you can buy a building in brownstone Brooklyn at a relatively affordable price compared to other neighborhoods.
What do you love about Bed-Stuy?
Aside from the beautiful architecture, we love the sense of the community. It’s rare to have a neighborhood where everyone still says “good morning” to one another as they walk by. We came back to the place this past week and some kind stranger put a holiday bow on every single gate on the street!
Did you have experience in renovations before you started this project?
Barry renovated a 2-bedroom apartment a couple of years ago, but that wasn’t nearly as extensive as this project. Jordan has been involved in several renovation projects at work but never his personal home! So we are definitely not professionals.
How is everything going? How long have you been working on the project?
We’ve only just begun! We closed on the place about a month and a half ago. We have been working with our architect on the design and DOB approval process.
What unexpected hiccups have you encountered along the way? How did you work through the issues?
The DOB has already thrown us a couple of curveballs. When we originally filed they found a document from 1936 that showed the building with a different configuration than it is now. So we had to file for a different type of approval that caused more design work and will require more inspections (and of course, more costs). We also found some termite damage in the basement that needs to be repaired. Once we start some of the demo in the place we are expecting to find some other surprises as well!
Do you work with local businesses in Bed-Stuy? If so, who do you recommend and why?
We are falling in love very fast with every single restaurant we have been trying- Grandchamps being a new favorite! We are going to try to use as many hyperlocal businesses as possible for the renovation. We pretty much need everything! Any and all recommendations are extremely helpful!
Are there still deals to be had in Bed-Stuy? If so, where?
We think so. Prices are definitely rising very quickly in Bedstuy, but it’s still possible to get a beautiful building for $1.5M or less. Just a couple of miles away in neighboring neighborhoods a similar building would be twice that. The eastern part of Bedstuy between Malcolm X and Broadway is the best bet for still finding a deal in the neighborhood.
If someone is looking to embark on the same journey, what advice would you give them?
Act fast. We think that Bedstuy prices are going to continue to rise. If things continue it will be harder to find something. Then find a good contractor and architect. It makes such a big difference to avoid hiccups and resolve them when they pop up. Also, enjoy the process! It can feel stressful but it’s not something that you get to do many times in your life. Building your home while restoring a piece of Brooklyn history.
For people who don’t have skills in renovations which of the following would you recommend and why? 1) Buy a pricey, but fully renovated brownstone from a developer. Or 2) Buy a place that needs a gut renovation, hire an architect and general contractor, and get it done on your terms.
Our preference is obviously the latter. We don’t have a lot of experience in renovations, but we’re really looking forward to making the place our own. We looked at a bunch of developer buildings in the process of finding our home, they usually opt for taking out so much of the original detail and there are so many things that are done without a lot of thought.
Where can people find you and what can that do to help your project?
You can follow us on our blog at www.thebrownstoneboys.com. We are being published weekly in The Brownstoner and can also be found on Instagram and Facebook @brownstoneboys. We’re really looking forward to making Bedstuy our new home and hope you enjoy our renovation journey!
- Friday 8pm – Ru Paul’s Drag Race at C’mon Everybody
- Friday & Saturday – “True to our Native Land” two-day event at The Brooklyn Bank
- Saturday 12p-4p – family holiday party at the Bed-Stuy YMCA
- Saturday 9pm – Tubby R+B at LunAtico
- Saturday & Sunday – Holiday Pop Up at The Narativ
Let’s face it, nobody really likes to have kids in restaurants – especially us parents! But, we do need to get out, even if it means at other people’s expense. Here is a list of restaurants that create an environment, not necessarily made for kids, but at least somewhat accepting of them.
Baron’s is quite ideal if you want to get out with your kids, have an excellent brunch, and keep your kids occupied. They have a lot of open space, so you aren’t right up against your neighbors, like most New York restaurants. And, they even have real toys for kids, like doll houses with dolls and a whole set of crayons, with all colors. And, shockingly, the staff are either Oscar-caliber actors, or they actually seem to think the kids are cute and they smile and interact with them.
Speedy Romeo’s is probably just a victim of its location, of its menu and of its success. It is on the border of Clinton Hill, which is full of families looking to get out for dinner and have a glass of wine. It serves top-notch pizza and related fare, so great food for kids and adults alike. And it’s well known with accolades. So, it attracts families with kids.
And, they know that this is their clientele, so they do cater to those families and take good care of them.
So, if you want a family dinner, where you won’t feel out of place with misbehaving kids, Speedy Romeo’s is a great choice. But, make sure that you get there early (like before 6) because it gets packed very quickly.
This could be a little bit of a controversial choice because Calaca isn’t really a conventional choice for kids. It’s a small restaurant, mostly occupied by its bar, they play loud metal-esque Latin music, and young 20-something hipsters seem to be the core clientele.
But, David and Jesus are just so damn welcoming and nice to the kids! And they make a hell of a mezcalita too. So, if you get there early, or for brunch on the weekends, you can probably get away with having your kids in there. It’s worth it!
Because of its large outdoor patio, Chilo’s is ideal for kids. They can run around, make a mess, eat some great tacos and chips and generally have a good time. Adults can get their real drinks inside and everyone is all set!
Similar to Calaca, Swell dive isn’t an obvious choice for kids, so take this with a grain of salt. Inside, it is mostly occupied by a large bar, so that isn’t really kids friendly. However, they have an arcade console in the back and lots of board games – so that can help occupy the kids when you are getting your drink on. Also, they have a great patio with life-size Jenga. So, when the weather is nice, and when the hour isn’t too late, Swell dive is a great place to head, even with kids.