09/14/16 10:12am
Photo by Cathleen Casacelli, via website.

Photo by Cathleen Casacelli, via website.

Healthy competition is good for all of us, and healthy competition among our city’s beaches only means we have more summery love to spread around to this city’s eight million people. Coney Island and Rockaway are very different kinds of places — the latter is of course more of a boardwalk amusement park, with amenities trending toward Times Square-ishness lately, while Rockaway is embracing its arty, grungy surf vibe. And now, as of last year, they both have parades featuring the march of sea creatures. Coney Island’s famous Mermaid Parade kicks off summer every June; now Rockaway has its own Poseidon’s Parade to close out the season in September on the boardwalk, which this year finally finished its post-Sandy rebuild.

The event, held this Saturday, is inspired by the peninsula’s annual in the Mermaid Parade, which means it’s a family friendly art-parade full of costumes, creativity and floats, and celebrates the Queens neighborhood’s resilience after the storm destroyed many homes (many of which are still not rebuilt btw). And since it’s a new event, it probably won’t be filled with #brands trying to get your attention just yet. (more…)

08/19/16 3:42pm
When it gets to be the picture on the left, you'll wish you took more advantage of the one on the right.

When it gets to be the picture on the left, you’ll wish you took more advantage of the one on the right.

September is a stalking and devious predator, lurking just off the distance over the horizon, ready to pounce and ensnare you in its constricting flannels, outrageously long pants and infuriatingly pumpkin-spiced things as soon as a cool breeze rolls in. You may be looking at the temperature this past week and think a you would welcome a chill in the air, but your brain is deceiving you. Once the first cold snap tightens its grip around the city you will stretch the gossamer of your memory back to these days, these hot August weekends, and wonder why the foolish dolt that was Past You didn’t take more advantage of them.

Let us take this time to give you this public service announcement: Use these next few weeks to soak up as much beach time as you can and store it in your internal batteries until you need it later. It’s a good time to remember that our friends at the NYC Beach Bus offer the easiest way to get to the beach, without having to worry about train transfers, subway delays or crowded city buses: They’ll take you to the beach for just $15 round trip, and you get a free beer from Sixpoint or Sweetwater and other swag too. Plus, their Boerum Hill pick-up spot is selling homemade ice cream, AND you can now find our summer tank tops there while supplies last! Summer hard now, your future self will thank you.  (more…)

08/10/16 12:11pm
A boat, a beat, some beers and you. Say goodbye to summer with Get Summered's Fantastic Voyage cruise in September.

A boat, a beat, some beers and you. Say goodbye to summer with Get Summered’s Fantastic Voyage cruise in September.

Good news everyone! It turns out summer is actually not going to end this year. I talked with Sam Champion and Neil deGrasse Tyson, they conferred with Lin-Manuel Miranda, Katie Ledecky, JJ Abrams and Jacob deGrom, who ran the idea by the Obamas (Michelle, Barack and Malia) and Beyoncé , and they all agreed that it just ain’t right to give up our summer so soon just because the calendar will turn to September, so, fuck it, let’s keep this party going.

This is a relief because we’ve got many more beach days and summer adventures ahead of us, and not enough time to do it. One of those adventures involves our friends at Get Summered, the DJ crew who’s been bringing the party to the Riis Park Beach Bazaar all summer (and sharing their tips on how to make your own hater-proof playlist). Though we all agreed that summer isn’t going to end this year, they’re sending off the “official” calendar summer with a big-ass Fantastic Voyage boat party on Sept. 10!

The four-hour cruise features an open bar, a “floating mall” with food and vendors and, of course, hot tunes to sear in the memories of another NYC summer as you sail by the Statue of Liberty. Tickets for all this cost just $50, but Brokelyn has a pair of tickets to giveaway! Find out how to enter below.  (more…)

08/01/16 12:46pm
Screen Shot 2016-07-30 at 2.01.14 PM

They say Brooklyn is like summer camp but it’s actually way better.  via  @gabriellaregina / IG

Even amidst the ghastlier headlines in the news these days, you can wipe the sweat from your brow knowing that you decided to live in Brooklyn: land of progressives, personal freedoms and Pokémon bar crawls.

And these are just a few items on a long laundry list of small pleasures you may take for granted as a Brooklynite. Lucky for you, I’m working a brief stint at a summer camp in Northern Canada! I am writing to you from this vantage to remind you of a few things you can do in Brooklyn that you can’t do anywhere else, and especially not at Canadian summer camp. (more…)

07/27/16 12:17pm
Don't be an L7 weenie: Go see The Sandlot for free.

Don’t be an L7 weenie: Go see The Sandlot for free.

What I love about The Sandlot is that it’s a movie about how stories of childhood told through the eyes of an adult are filtered through the thin vaseline of nostalgic distortion, something we’re all guilty of using. This is why the story of a bunch of kids playing ball on an empty lot is suffused with hyperbolic events and characters out of proportion. The neighbor’s dog, Hercules, was never truly that big and monstrous, the fence never really that towering; Benny was a star of the friend group but rode to levels of mythic neighborhood hero on amplified waves of reverence for someone who loomed so large in their imaginations. When you’re a kid and your world is the neighborhood, even the next yard over seems like a vast unexplored chasm of unchartered territory. You look back and think, man, everything was so big then.

The Sandlot is the perfect summer movie because it lives in the sweet spot of all our collective memories of our childhood summers, those days that probably we remember with sunny glee but maybe never quite existed, running through the streets without any cares except where to find a baseball.

The good news is you’re an adult now so you can be as carefree as you choose with your time: We suggest using some of that time to go watch The Sandlot for free outdoors at Fort Greene Park on Aug. 4. Your childhood self would be proud (bring s’mores).  (more…)

07/15/16 8:51am
It's the final chowdown!

It’s the final creamdown!

“Your freezer looks like if your mom’s shitty boyfriend was trying to teach you a lesson. Like, ‘you’re going to eat all the ice cream!’.’’
—Judge Eric Silver

In 1982, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed July to be National Ice Cream Month. So too must we proclaim a winner of the 2016 Brokelyn Ice Cream Bracket. (Enormous respect for ice cream is pretty much the only thing Reagan and I have in common.)

Years of training (to eat ice cream), sacrifice (forgoing other food in favor of ice cream), and talent (at eating ice cream) have prepared us for this moment. One humid summer evening in Brooklyn, four judges tasted 24 flavors from 12 Brooklyn ice cream shops. The deliberations were tough, but the rewards were sweet. After hours of discussion, disagreements, and tummy aches, we were able to name a winner. Let’s take a look at the final scores. (Get caught up on the first four installments of the bracket here!). (more…)

07/14/16 11:23am
The modlet on the right turned this A/C into a futuristic smart A/C. Photo by Tim Donnelly/Brokelyn.

The modlet on the right turned this A/C into a futuristic smart A/C. Photo by Tim Donnelly/Brokelyn.

The idea of a “smart air conditioner” probably seems like some future technology you’re a long way away from actually being able to own, like the pizza rehydrator from Back to the Future II. A smart A/C means a device that can be controlled via app ( as all things in the future will be controlled), keep track of your energy usage and start up remotely whenever you’d like to come home to a frosty apartment.

But smart A/Cs are not just a dream of Shark Tank or that fancy Google tech you hear about in between WNYC programs: You can turn any A/C in your home into a smart, app-controlled device thanks to a program from Con Edison. Plus it’s free, and you can get rewards for using it too. (more…)

07/12/16 11:00am
Get on a boat: Here are eight ways to get on the water this summer for under $50

This is what you’ll be riding when you meet your Moby Dick. Photo via American Princess Cruises

Maybe one of your #summergoals this year is to be on boats more. What’s not to love about a boat? The trouble is access. In New York, we are surrounded by water, but we’re not always sure how to get out on it without either knowing a boat captain personally or else paying a pretty penny. Whether you fancy a yacht, sailboat, cruise ship or ferry; want to go out fishing, brush up on your knowledge of waterfront history, whale watch, peep Coney Island fireworks, or just go on a joy ride, we rounded up eight ways to get out onto the NYC waterways without going overboard, financially. This will be part one of our two-part summer boating series; check back later this week for our guide to self-powered boats—where to kayak, canoe, and paddle in Brooklyn on the cheap.  (more…)

07/10/16 12:00pm
Beach + you + games = summer memories (and also prizes).

Beach + you + games = summer memories (and also prizes).

Summer is in full swing and it’s time to get yo’ ass to the beach every damn chance you get! Brokelyn is helping kick off Push, the brand-new games area at the always-hopping Riis Park Beach Bazaar this Sunday.

Come out for a day of music, drinks, fun and your chance to win some dope summer prizes in our cornhole tournament. We’ll also be selling our sexy new summer tank tops at a special beach discount (just $15!). Plus, you can get your hands on one of our coveted Brokelyn beer koozies too.

Prizes for the cornhole tournament include: A Brokelyn tank top! A beach kit from Boarders surf shop: including a chair, umbrella and sand toys! And more!

Look for us from noon to 6pm with the tank tops and games, next to the Slice O’Whit pizza shop at the Bazaar (near the Jacob Riis golf course on the promenade).

Check out The Push every weekend for the rest of the summer at the Riis Beach Bazaar: they create a fun and memorable table tennis and beach-gaming experience for everyone: in addition to ping pong, you can play cornhole, horseshoes and pole-ish horseshoes too!

Wind you say? Fear not! The Push has weighted outdoor ping pong balls when the weather is uncooperative, for tournaments and for those seriously competitive types. For more info, visit thepushbk.com and follow The Push on Instagram and Facebook too. Sponsored by: Killerspin #UnPlugNPlay & Franklin Sporting Goods.

Summer in the city just got sexier.

Summer in the city just got sexier.

07/08/16 1:02pm
James Murphy and LCD Soundsystem will headline Sunday's festival. Via Facebook.

James Murphy and LCD Soundsystem will headline Sunday’s festival. Via Facebook.

Summer festival season is in full swing and we’re soaking up as many outdoor concerts as we can — without leaving the five boroughs, of course. And lucky for us, we don’t have to go far to experience one of the best festivals of the summer: NYC is about to be home to a major new festival: Panorama.

Goldenvoice, the folks behind Coachella, are bringing the first-ever Panorama festival to Randall’s Island July 22, 23 and 24 and it’s got one of the most stacked festival lineups we’ve ever seen: Headliners Kendrick Lamar, Arcade Fire and the freshly reunited LCD Soundsystem are backed up by Run the Jewels, Flatbush Zombies, The National, Sufjan Stevens, Alabama Shakes, The Julie Ruin, Broken Social Scene and a whole bunch more.

Tickets for three-day passes start at $319, and one-day passes at $99, but we’ve got the hookup for you: Brokelyn is giving away a pair of three-day VIP passes AND a pair of three-day general passes, just for you! Here’s how to enter. (more…)