New York Times: After the Launching (and Scrapping) of Navy Ships, a New Mission

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New York Times, December 26, 2017

by C.J. Hughes

Three other federally owned naval yards — in Kittery, Me.; Portsmouth, Va.; and Washington — have more traditional maritime uses.

“One of the great things about the redevelopment of the Navy yards is that there’s been so much preservation of the historic character,” said Andrew Gustafson, who has led tours of the Brooklyn Navy Yard since 2010. “The history’s a selling point. It makes the place unique and attractive.”

A visit helps convey the vastness of Kearny’s shipbuilding operation, which at its peak during World War II churned out a finished ship every six days courtesy of 35,000 employees, according to Hugo Neu.

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Guide to Fleet Week New York 2017 Ships

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This year during Fleet Week New York, we will be visited by more than a dozen ships and units from the US Navy, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, Military Sealift Command, and Royal Canadian Navy that will be berthed at locations in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Staten Island, and the Bronx. Here’s a brief guide to some of the units that will be in town, and be sure to check out the full schedule of events on the official Fleet Week NYC website.

Manhattan Pier 88

  • USS Kearsarge open for visitors May 25, 26, 27, and 29, 8am–5pm


Naval Cemetery Landscape Opens to Public at Brooklyn Navy Yard

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Our friends at the Brooklyn Greenway Initiative (BGI) achieved a great milestone Friday when they officially opened the Naval Cemetery Landscape at the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

The beautifully designed 1.7-acre green space is publicly accessible along the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway, a landscaped bicycle and pedestrian path that, when completed, will run 27 miles from Greenpoint to Jamaica Bay. One of 130 green spaces funded by TKF Foundation’s Open Spaces Sacred Places program, the Naval Cemetery Landscape serves as a remembrance of the site’s rich and poignant history as a once-forgotten military cemetery, while creating a new and vibrant ecological sanctuary where we can all take a moment to escape urban clutter and reflect in nature. (more…)

Homing Pigeons Return to Brooklyn Navy Yard After 115-Year Absence with “Fly By Night”

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After a hiatus of 115 years, a vast squadron of homing pigeons has returned to the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

This weekend marks the opening of Fly By Night, an ambitious performance piece by artist Duke Riley and produced by Creative Time. On the deck of the decommissioned naval vessel Baylander, Riley and his team have erected a pigeon coop and assembled some 1,800 birds. After weeks of training and preparations, performances will begin on May 7 and run for six weeks, every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night at dusk. Each evening, this flock will be released as the sun begins to set, each bearing an LED light on its foot to create a swirling, winged light show above the East River. (more…)

Brooklyn Navy Yard Winter Photo Submissions, 2016

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Last month, we held our first installment of the Brooklyn Navy Yard Seasonal Photography Tour for 2016. We had a small but dedicated group of photographers on what turned out to be a stunning day – and the photos clearly show that. Three of these photos will be selected by this season’s judge, Alyssa Fridgen. Alyssa has a keen eye for the Yard and historic landscapes, as she is Exhibit Content Manager for the Brooklyn Navy Yard Center at BLDG 92, as well as being the Education Director and Curator and the Bartow-Pell Mansion Museum in the Bronx. (more…)

Presidential Visits to the Brooklyn Navy Yard, Part II

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Three years ago, in celebration of Presidents Day, we wrote about the handful of times that sitting US presidents had paid visits to the Brooklyn Navy Yard. At that time, we only mentioned two such visits – by William Howard Taft, once as president-elect on November 13, 1908, and as soon-to-be-ousted-president on October 30, 1912, and by Woodrow Wilson,  on May 11, 1914. But we have since done considerably more historical digging, and we would like to share a few more notable presidential visits. (more…)

Brooklyn Navy Yard Fall Photo Finalists Capture NYC’s Working Waterfront

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As winter approaches, it means another year of Brooklyn Navy Yard Seasonal Photography Tours is in the books, and we’re happy to announce the final set of three finalists in our annual photo contest, chosen from the submissions from our fall tour earlier this month. These three will join the winterspring, and summer selections in a gallery of 12 finalists that will be displayed later this year in the Brooklyn Navy Yard Center at BLDG 92. You will also have the chance to vote for your favorites in our annual People’s Choice Award voting, both online and at BLDG 92.

But now, on to the selections, picked this time by John Bartelstone, someone who has spent the better part of 25 years documenting the history and transformations of the Yard’s amazing industrial landscape. And not surprisingly, each one of the winning photos captured some element of the working waterfront. (more…)

Brooklyn Navy Yard Fall Photography Contest Submissions

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Just over a week ago, we had our final installment of the Brooklyn Navy Yard Seasonal Photography Tour for 2015. Thank you to the five participants who sent in their photos, and to the 20 or so people who came out with thus to explore the working waterfront areas of the Yard.

As we do every season, three photos will be chosen from this lot to be entered in the year-end competition (see the winter, spring, and summer finalists already selected). We are lucky to have the keen and experienced eye of John Bartelstone, author of the beautiful book The Brooklyn Navy Yard, chronicling the industrial landscape of the Yard over more than two decades (and you can get a copy at BLDG 92!) (more…)

Longtime Yard Photographer John Bartelstone to Judge Fall Photo Tour

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Each season, we offer a special opportunity for photographers to explore the Brooklyn Navy Yard with us. Our next Seasonal Photography Tour is taking place this Saturday, October 10 at 11am, departing from BLDG 92

For this special tour, we’ll be exploring the industrial and maritime features of the waterfront at the Yard, including close-up views of the many ships that are currently berthed at the Yard awaiting repairs, a pier that will soon be redeveloped for new construction, and the landmark 1851 dry dock. Unlike previous tours, we will not be visiting the Naval Hospital Campus, though you can still step inside the 1838 building until October 24 as part of a special art exhibition there following the tour. (more…)

Brooklyn Navy Yard Summer Photography Tour Finalists

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This summer, a small but dedicated crew of photographers braved the July showers to photograph the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and they shared their work with us. From those photos, BLDG 92 Visiting Artist Robin Michals selected her three favorites, which will be displayed in BLDG 92 in 2016.

Robin’s work has been focused around the changing face of the Brooklyn waterfront, so not surprisingly, her selections reflect that sensibility, showcasing the Yard’s industrial dimensions and working character. We will continue that trend with our fall installment, when we will be joined by John Bartlelstone, longtime chronicler of the Yard’s heavy industry, and focus our lenses on the working waterfront areas. (more…)