03/22/17 12:41pm
"Shea Stadium: lifting people up since 2009." Photo by Seth Applebaum

“Shea Stadium: lifting people up since 2009.” Photo by Seth Applebaum

Bushwick’s Shea Stadium has had a rough year, having announced their second temporary closure back at the beginning of this month. Instead of throwing in the towel and caving to the bureaucratic, corporate regime that has successfully killed so many of the small DIY institutions shut since the turn of the century, Shea is continuing to fight the good fight and has now launched a Kickstarter to raise $50,000 and re-open, “legally for a more sustainable future.”

This is an especially feasable goal seeing as Shea states the issues with the space are not structural but a matter of racking up more fines than they could pay for as, “the city’s increased regulation and inflated rents have made running these types of spaces an uphill climb.” According to a diagram showing where funds will go on the Kickstarter page, the majority of money will be for Department of Health, Department of Buildings, and FDNY renovations, with architecture fees in second most expensive place. (more…)

02/08/17 12:44pm
Bushwick Market Hotel Coworking Space

Market Hotel in party mode (photo via Market Hotel), Market Hotel in under-construction mode (photo via Twitter).

Bushwick’s Market Hotel, temple of all that is good and indie, has officially become one with Nu Brooklyn: it is now a daytime coworking space.

For those who don’t know, the Market Hotel is a beloved DIY venue off the Myrtle-Broadway stop by the Bed Stuy border. A former squat that went legal and became a music venue, seeing performances by the likes of Sleater-Kinney and Ava Luna before turning out to not actually have gone legal at all when cops raided it in 2010 during a Smith Westerns show.  Now, in need of income as they continue to get their act, and a liquor license, together, the Market has added a 8am to 7pm coworking space to their roster of community offerings, according to Bushwick Daily. (more…)

01/18/17 2:00pm

In case you missed it on the FAQ page for the Women’s March on Washington this weekend, there are serious restrictions on what you can carry while you march. Most irksome of these is the restriction on backpacks and large bags, which have to be transparent.

Backpacks are not permitted unless they are clear and no larger than 17″x12″x6″ (colored transparent bags are not permitted).

The DCPD *may* not get around to enforcing this in Washington proper since there will be so many people there, but why take the risk if you don’t have to?

Clear bags do exist in NYC, though it’s unlikely you’ll find one before Saturday: both Target and K-Mart say they’re all out, and single-day delivery for any of the bags on Amazon requires a $35+ purchase. Who wants to pay to protest?

If you’re fine just having your phone/wallet/keys/ID in DC, tucked into your pockets, that’s great. But if you were banking on carrying food, tampons or any other emergency supplies, then you may want to watch the video above. Youtube user RYAN IDK made this neat video showing you how, with a little duct tape and elbow grease, you can re-purpose plastic packaging into a sturdy clear backpack — with adjustable straps! — for the Women’s March. (more…)

12/01/16 3:25pm
Get your hoilday kicks, en croute, at the 'Shwick.

Get your hoilday kicks, en croute, at the ‘Shwick.

Holidays also mark the peak season of DIY, and people are scouring staples like Etsy and Pinterest to see what they can make, bake, gift or thrift for the upcoming holidays. If you are lacking inspiration needed to get those creative juices flowing, (because hey, aren’t we all) or if you just want a quick one-stop shop for all of your holiday shopping, head to your nearest holiday market.

Oh, what’s that? You need help finding one that close to you? As per usual, we’ve got you covered, with the borough’s finest in local gifts and crafts–enough to make even a scrooge splurge. (more…)

10/21/16 2:52pm
40 last-minute, low-cost Halloween costumes that'll last you through all your Brooklyn parties

Gregg T. loves topical Halloween humor. edited by Sam Corbin

Hot take: Halloween isn’t for everybody. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great holiday. It just favors creatives and DIY experts to a fault. Many people are Hallo-wise enough to start planning their costume for the following year on Nov. 1. — and if you’re one of those people, more power to you! — but that leaves the rest of us lazybones procrastinators feeling somehow underprepared to party alongside everyone else. Unless you’re engaging in cosplay-levels of credible costumery, you’ve got to come up with something funny that’ll pass for effort.

Brokelyn knows this better than anyone, having rolled up to countless Halloween parties both in and out of hastily-cobbled costume ourselves. We don’t like to see you suffer on a holiday that should be meant for pure enjoyment and spooky revelry, so we’ve put together a comprehensive list of last-minute, low-cost costumes that harken to relatable themes and memes of 2016.

[You’ll note as you go that in our humble opinion, the best Halloween costumes are visual puns, or ones that take only a single punchline to explain. So, while these costumes may not win you every costume contest in town, they’re sure to get you a few laughs at every party you go to, and they’re simple enough to recycle from night to night. They also *probably* won’t get copied by someone else, unless that someone also read this article.] (more…)

10/05/16 2:13pm

If watching scary movies on the big screen isn’t enough to get you your Halloween fix, then consider making your own: In partnership with Animation Block Party, meme tycoon GIPHY is looking for the scariest, most blood-curdling or sheerly absurd Halloween GIFs on the internet.

If you like making memes, boast a solid Vine following or just appreciate a good story told via short-form looping image, then this is your chance to “get spooky, scary, creepy, and kooky with your GIF-making” in service of everyone’s favorite haunted holiday.  (more…)

09/22/16 3:00pm
Homeless Comedy makes a house call.

Homeless Comedy makes a house call.

For the single New Yorker, comedy shows are one of the best excuses to get out of the house. There are always free or $5 shows out there, and one or two drinks will suffice to round out the night. But once coupled, comedy night becomes a date night, and going to shows can rack up quite a sum. If you’re treating your s/o to a headliner show with tickets, drinks and maybe a bite to eat beforehand, you’ll quickly come to spend at least $50 for an evening out.

Enter Homeless Comedy, a “New York comedy club without a home” founded by 38-year-old comedian Will Mars. Homeless Comedy provides the same comedy club experience, but as DIY living room entertainment in your very own apartment. You can drink your own booze and cook your own food; all you’re paying for is the comedy.

“Just clear out a corner of your main room, turn the seats to face it, invite a bunch of friends around, and we’ll turn up to do the rest,” Mars said.

Mars spoke to Brokelyn about his idea for the group, and how he thinks it complements an already saturated comedy scene in NYC.

“I noticed that most of the exciting comedy clubs and things that were sprouting up had been comic-driven, one-off bar shows,” Mars told us. “Everything more exciting is in Brooklyn and Queens right now [because] it has more of a community feel. And I just wanted to take it a step further, like why don’t we see about putting shows on in an apartment? A bespoke comedy night, just the audience and the comedians.” (more…)

09/01/16 12:07pm
Boozers, users and mus..icians. via Instagram user @gadolden

Boozers, users and mus..icians. via Instagram user @gadolden

Drinking and music have always been a winning pair. Just think of how good everyone sounds at karaoke after a few rounds, or how the best house parties are wont to end in hazy liquid jam sessions. Also, music festivals. Also, da clurb.

And on that note (get it?), registration is now open for group “Booze Music Lessons.” Besides providing you with yet another reason not to give up on New York just yet, this is an affordable way to learn an instrument, and comes with booze (not enough get smashed, mind you, but this is a classroom setting). (more…)

08/10/16 2:20pm
Girls in DIY shelters have more fun. Photo via @annlodwicklove on Instagram.

Girls who build their own beach forts have more fun. Photo via @annlodwicklove on Instagram.

A beach day is made infinitely better with the addition of shade. If you don’t own an umbrella, or you don’t feel like lugging one with you, you’ve got some options. If you’re taking the NYC Beach Bus, you can reserve an umbrella for a very reasonable $10 via Rent Ride Return, which they will deliver right to the bus.

But say you’re really budgeting or prefer to get creative once you’re out on the sand, or you’re biking and can’t bring a whole set-up, all you need is a sheet and something to tether it to, which could be anything from the spokes of your bike wheels to some sturdy driftwood you find in the surf, to create (but not throw) your own shade.

We know anything DIY can be intimidating, especially for those of us who’d rather peruse PINT-erest than Pinterest (get it? like pint of beer?). While seeking examples of do it yourself beach encampments, we checked out how the crazy kids at Fort Tilden do it (they tend to be in extra need of shelter, on account of being mostly naked).

While you can ostensibly pitch your own makeshift shelter at any of NYC’s beaches, Fort Tilden is the ideal locale because it’s much less crowded, there’s never a shortage of driftwood, and we like to think the actual surrounding forts provide inspiration. Not to mention, your shelter will look real pretty against the scenic backdrop of Fort Tilden wilderness.

Here are 11 examples of the best DIY beach forts we found on the beaches of Fort Tilden — that you can make, too!  (more…)

07/13/16 10:00am
Technology has come a long way since this, though this is still a pretty baller rig. Via Flickr user macq.

Technology has come a long way since this, though this is still a pretty baller rig. Via Flickr user macq.

Ever have something that should be played at high volume, preferably in a residential area? Not that we here at Brokelyn would advocate disturbing the peace, but New York is (quite literally) a loud city, and why should automobiles have all the fun on the run when it comes to mobile sound? Radio Raheem bore the burden of the boombox, but you don’t have to!

Technology’s progressed even if society in many ways hasn’t (the racism and police brutality featured in the climax of Do the Right Thing rings truer than ever today), and your options for mobile sound compound when you bring your bicycle into the mix. The question remains: how exactly do you deck out your draisienne with dope audio? We’ll demonstrate four different ways, from shamelessly storebought to solidly soldered, depending upon whether you prefer taking it easy and taking your tunes with you indoors and out or prefer getting your hands dirty and riding around on a permanent party machine. (more…)