Tag Archive | Fun Things to Do In Brooklyn

Let’s Go: Coney Island Summer Friday Fireworks!

Boardwalk at Dusk
All Photos By Gail

If you haven’t been out to Coney Island yet to see the Summer Fireworks, then this coming Friday, September 2nd is your last chance to experience the magic until they start again next June! So, you must plan your trip right now. Let’s go!

Nathan's

First of all, you should plan to arrive on the scene early enough so that you can get a Hot Dog and some Fries (or whatever else you like to eat) at Nathan’s. There is also a Nathan’s right on the Boardwalk, if you prefer a bumped up level of quality freak watching to that available at the original location on the corner of Surf and Stillwell Avenues. The food is exactly the same at either location.

Art Wall By Crash
Art Wall By Crash

Don’t forget to stop by the Coney Art Walls, which will be up until October!

Art Wall By Nychos
Art Wall By Nychos

Art Wall By D-Face
Art Wall By D*Face

Snow Cone Stand

While you stroll along the Boardwalk, stop by this Snow Cone Stand and treat yourself to an additional refreshment!

View of Boardwalk from Sand

Even if you are going to pass on checking out any of the Luna Park rides, because you have just eaten at Nathan’s and do not want to barf,  it is wonderful just to look at everything when it is all lit up against the night sky. Head out to the sand early and watch all of the action from the beach, while you listen to the delighted screams and shrieks from people on the rides! Wee!

Scream Zone

Wonder Wheel

Oh, the beautifulness.

Parachute Jump at Night

Now it is 9:30 PM, and time for the Fireworks to begin! Lets go to the video!

The full show lasts much longer than 2 minutes, but you get the idea.

Luna Park at Night

Williams Candy Shop

And then stop by Williams Candy Shop on the way to the train to pick up a sweet treat to take home! What a fun adventure!

Find out more about the Coney Island Fireworks, as well as other fun stuff to do on your visit, at This Link!

Red Wheel

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Photos: Lily Pool Terrace at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden

Top of Terrace
Top of the Terrace, All Photos by Gail

If you are like me, you are trying to cram as much summer fun into the remaining few weeks of summer as possible; and it’s always rewarding to take advantage of the nice weather by spending time outdoors while you can do so wearing as few items of clothing on as possible! Outdoors, yay!

Violet and White Flowers

If you are paying attention to my personal activity schedule, as chronicled on this blog during Summer of Fun 2015, then you might recall that Geoffrey and I went to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden earlier in the season, and had just ridiculous amounts of fun. But the garden is very huge and we only managed to see less than half of the grounds before exhaustion set in. So, we had to go back again.

Lily Pool Terrace Signage

One of the areas we had yet to explore is called Lily Pool Terrace, which sounds very posh. As the sign above indicates, the Lily Pool Terrace is home to many shimmering pools and fountains, featuring nearly 100 kinds of sacred lotuses, and hardy and tropical water-lilies which bloom in July, August and September.

Fountain with Atrium

So, you know what that means: if you want to see the Lily Pool Terrace in action, you have to go right now!

Pad with Yellow Flowers

Here are some photos I took, to get you excited!

Lily Pool Terrace

Pad with Red Flowers

We saw lotuses of red, yellow, pink and purple on our visit.

Pool View 2

Pool with Pink Flower
Pds with Purple Flower
Pool View 1

All of the glass buildings you see in these photos have plants in them as well.

Large Lily Pads

The Brooklyn Botanic Garden is Located at 150 Eastern Parkway, with entrances also at 455 Flatbush Avenue, and also at 990 Washington Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11225. Take the 2 or 3 to Eastern Parkway if that train is near you! Otherwise, get other directions, plus more information to help plan your visit, at This Link!

Lily Pool Terrace

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A Fun Visit to the City Reliquary Museum!

City Reliquary Museum Exterior
All Photos By Gail

Summer is in full swing and everybody is looking for stuff to do with their time off.  Today, I want tell you about a place you can go where you will have so much fun your head will explode. If you get excited by learning about the history of New York City, and love to have fun adventures that don’t cost very much, the City Reliquary Museum is a place you simply must visit! Located just two stops off the L train, and a short walk, into Brooklyn from Manhattan (for easy reference, it’s located directly across the street from the Knitting Factory), a visit to this local gem of sweet nostalgia is one of the best bargains in existence. Naomi and I had the chance to visit last month on a day that was somewhat overcast and drizzly, and we had all kinds of crazy fun.

City Reliquary Museum Door

Five Dollars

Best of all, admission is just Five Dollars! What a bargain! The City Reliquary Museum not only collects relics and ephemera from NYC life in the five boroughs, but they also feature special exhibits that put a keen focus on the minutia that makes New York one of the greatest places to visit, and live, on earth. Here are some of the things we saw and enjoyed during our visit!

City Reliquary Museum Turnstile

Once you enter the Museum from the front room, which is home to an adorable little gift shop that you’re going to want to spend some time browsing before you head out, you’ll have two more rooms to explore that are just packed with cool stuff.

Interior View

In the first room, you will be captivated by wall-to-wall and floor to ceiling collections, displays and exhibits of everything from tributes to New York City landmarks, two remembrances of famous businesses, NYC Baseball teams, and on to icons of the transit system and anything else you can imagine that it has something to do with life here in the City that Never Sleeps.

City Reliquary Museum Room 1

Locals will recognize the red and green globes above as markers found at the entrances to many subway stations. I love how they’ve incorporated them right into the design of the room.

Subway Door

Here is a adjoining-car door (and what looks like an ancient subway route map as well!) taken from a long-retired subway train.

Bus Stop Sign

You can still find bus stop route markers like this at stops around town. I love how it just seems to be discarded in a corner, like you’re stumbling upon some kind of archaeological dig.

Foot Vibrator

Have you ever used one of these? It reminds me of a re-created historical relic that you might find at Disneyland in an exhibit about Americana Kitsch.

Statue of Liberty Postcard Collection

This collection of vintage postcards depicting the Statue of Liberty will give you an excellent idea of the attention to detail that’s paid to each separate display over every square inch of the museum. The rooms may be small, but you could spend several hours in here.

Al Criscillo's Barber Shop

Maybe you were once a patron of Al Criscillo’s Barber Shop, which was located at Metropolitan Avenue & Humboldt Street in Brooklyn — not that far from where the museum now sits. If so, you can relive your happy memories of time spent in his chair when you take a peek inside this nostalgia-inducing diorama.

Al Criscillo's Barber Shop

Photos of Al with some of his customers are preserved in album adjacent to the diorama. It is extremely sweet.

History of Burlesque Signage

Learn about the History of Burlesque in NYC in this compact exhibit that ls about the size of a Phone Booth.

History of Burlesque

Stuffed Alligator with Pizza

Stuffed Alligator on the ceiling enjoys a slice!

Bathroom

Even the Restroom is is like a tiny museum inside a museum.

Bathroom Detail

Talk about economic use of available real estate!

Pizza Box Chronicles Exhibit

The museum also hosts rotating Special Exhibits, and currently there are two different ones you can see. The first is called The Pizza Box Chronicles, which pays tribute to New York City’s Love Affair with Pizza!

NYC Inspired Pizza Boxes

There is a pretty impressive collection of pizza boxes, including New York–inspired pizza boxes from restaurants not even located in the state!

NYC Inspired Pizza Boxes

Ray's Pizza Box

Get educated by reading all about the legend of Famous Original Ray’s Pizza!

Famous Ray's Story

You can also watch a loop of film clips from various movies where the characters talk about pizza, eat pizza or talk about eating pizza. Fun!

Pizza Wall

Community Collections

The second Special Exhibit which was featured when we visited is dedicated to a private collection of Joseph Kopitz, who collects Miniature Souvenir Buildings.

Souvenir Building Collection

What a cool Collection! Apparently, Joe has been amassing a small empire of New Your City real estate for the past 30 years. His collection includes such well-known buildings as the Empire State building, the Chrysler building, the Woolworth building, the Pan Am building, Grande Central Terminal and many others. He is even added buildings from all over the world to his vast holdings of buildings that average only from 3 inches to 8 inches tall. It was very generous of him to share his collection with the museum, so that others can also enjoy it.

Souvenir Building Collection Detail

After you’ve browsed the museum’s two main rooms, be sure and head out to explore the backyard area, which is where they host community events from time to time, such as film screenings, as well as being a place to store artifacts that don’t quite fit into the museum.

Outside Yard

Outdoor Bar

Take a look at this cool bar.

Outdoor Bar Detail
Brooklyn Lager, Naturally

Backyard Shrine

Look at this beautiful shrine made out of old bottles and cement, where the Statue of Liberty is ensconced in an old bathtub. Amazing.

Coconut Head

View of Building from Yard

There’s a nice collection of well-kept picnic tables back here, and maybe they would let you sit there and have a snack, but you would want to ask first.

P1100902

We had the best adventure at the City Reliquary Museum, and I’m going to suggest you put it on your list of local sites not to be missed! if you have friends coming in from out of town be sure to bring them here also.

Gift Shop
Exit Through The Gift Shop

The City Reliquary Museum is Located at 370 Metropolitan Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211. Hours are Thurs – Sun: 12 Noon – 6:00 PM (Except Major Holidays). To get the most up to date information, please call (718)782-4842.

A Visit to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden!

Fountain of Flowers
All Photos By Gail

It was a complete accident that Geoffrey and I ended up making a pit stop at the gorgeous Brooklyn Botanic Garden as part of a recent trip to visit the Brooklyn Museum. It wasn’t until we were on the train that I noticed (for the first time, ever) that the Eastern Parkway Stop off the 2 and 3 is also the stop for the BBG, so I suggested to Geoffrey that we “See how far away it is from the museum” once we got out of the subway. What we discovered, much to our ecstatic delight, is that the Garden is literally right next to the Museum. It could not possibly have been more conveniently located. Even better, Geoffrey’s work ID card got us in for free, and since we had no strict agenda to follow, we spent over an hour exploring nature as a prelude to some hardcore, art-viewing action. It was an amazing day!

Pillar

Make sure you pick up a map of the grounds at the entrance because, while it is fun to just wander freely, the place is massive, and you might find that there are certain areas you want to make sure you see before you need to head out.

Trellis

Sunscreen is recommended on a bright sunny day, but even if you are looking to get a tan, there are plenty of shady areas to walk, such as this trellis-covered path that took us to our first stop, the Native Flora Garden.

Native Flora Garden Signage

Native Flora Garden Path

The Native Flora Garden feels like being on a forest path, where you can see hundreds of plants that are native the New York Metropolitan area. It is flat terrain, but it is still a nice hike.

Bird

Y0u can also spot birds and other small wildlife.

Limestone Ledge

Limestone Ledge. All of Manhattan used to look like this.

Orange Wildflowers

There are lots of wild flowers as well. Most have identifying signs near them so you know what you are looking at.  Educational!

Native Flora Garden Signage

The people who created this fountain are truly outdoor fountain pros. I wanted to jump into this fountain to cool off, but it is not allowed.

Row of Pink Roses

Next, we headed over to the Cranford Rose Garden.

Rose Garden Full View Pink and Purple

Cranford Rose Garden Statue

There must be thousands of Rose bushes, plus other flowers and flowering plants in this garden.

Red Roses

Looking at all of these beautiful rose bushes made me feel extremely nostalgic for my late Grandmother, who had an incredible green thumb and was always so proud of her rose garden.

Cranford Rose Garden

You could take a million pictures. I nearly did!

Pink Rose Blooms

Remember that flowers mean that there will be bees buzzing about, doing their thing. If you are allergic, please use caution, but never swat at a bee! Bees make our food. Please let them live.

Cranford Rose Garden

Looking for a shady place to sit and rest, our next stop was the Cherry Esplanade.

Cherry Esplanade

The Cherry Esplanade is rows and rows of Cherry trees that are no longer flowering by Summer, but which provide a gorgeous green shade just the same.

Flowering Bushes

At the end of the Esplanade is the Rose Arc Pool. More Flowers! More Bees! More Sun! Nature is Awesome!

Flowered Arches

Green Plant

Sun Dial

If you walk up to that building and take a left, you’ll end up at the Japanese Hill-and-Pond Garden.

Japanese Garden

The pond is a bit green, to say the least, but you can see fish and turtles swimming in it. The Red Archway in the water is called a Torii. It is commonly found at the entrance to a Shinto temple or shrine.

Japanese Maple

Japanese Maple Tree.

Pagoda and Pond

We stopped by the gift shop for quick a browse before making our way back over to the Museum, where we had an excellent time before returning to the city for dinner. I can’t wait to go back to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden to see everything we missed on our first trip!

BBG Signage

The Brooklyn Botanic Garden is Located at 150 Eastern Parkway, with entrances also at 455 Flatbush Avenue, and also at 990 Washington Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11225. Take the 2 or 3 to Eastern Parkway if that train is near you! Otherwise, get other directions, plus more information to help plan your visit at This Link!

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