An endless torrential downpour did nothing to dampen the spirits of Greeters and our leader Joan, as we sloshed along 3rd Street in Carroll Gardens and Park Slope, Brooklyn.
Both are former industrial neighborhoods now gentrified. In Carroll Gardens, beautiful landscaping, million dollar brownstones, and a soon-to-be-built Whole Foods were evidence of that gentrification.
Today Carroll Gardens is a mecca for families because of its beauty and proximity to Manhattan, although some of its industrial past still haunts the area. The Gowanus Canal, one of the city’s most polluted waterways, has yet to be cleaned up.
Next we went into the offices of BRIC (Brooklyn Information and Culture), which presents the annual Celebrate Brooklyn! Performing Arts Festival every summer. Since 1979, more than 2,000 artists from different countries have performed for over 3,000,000 people – and it’s free! BRIC also offers low-cost Media Education Courses such as TV production and editing, to keep up with ever-changing technology.
On to Park Slope and The Old Stone House, where in 1776, 3,000 American soldiers delayed the advance of 25,000 British and Hessian attackers! This historic site was also the Brooklyn Dodgers’ first clubhouse in the 1950’s. The team moved to Los Angeles in 1958.
Continuing along the handsome, double-width sidewalks, we had a one-time-only invitation to visit a brownstone owned by an artist. Built in 1892, this elegant home brought the past to life. Fireplaces, pocket doors and banisters were made from the original rich, mahogany wood. Throughout the parlor were illustrations and sculptures created by the artist. This blending of old and new was a wonderful contrast – and being inside for a while changed us from rain-soaked prunes into people again.