Less than a year after being forced to relocate from its original location, North Brooklyn Farms has sprung up again – in an empty lot across from its previous home.
Last summer, the founders of North Brooklyn Farms, Henry Sweets and Ryan Watson, launched a Kickstarter campaign to allow them to relocate and continue the programming they had built at their old site, including visits from local schools to learn about urban farming.
While the campaign was successful, the group was unable to extend the lease at its old location, as the developers who own the lot, Two Trees Development, who are behind the Domino redevelopment project, were set to begin construction there.
Instead Two Trees offered them the lot across the street.
At the old lot, Sweets and Watson grew dozens of varieties of vegetables that were sold at the farm twice a week – but due lack of funding for staff and programming, the farm was only open to the public twice a week. An additional form of funding came from farm-to-table Sunday suppers held on site.
Much of the same will continue at the new lot, which is located on Kent Avenue between South 3rd and 5th Streets. The Farm officially opened its doors to the public over Fourth of July weekend. Attendees caught glimpses of the fireworks over the East River as they noshed on food prepared by Vaya Taqueria.
But apart from the Sunday Suppers, which will continue at this location as well, there are several other programs taking place at the Farm over the summer.
Specialty food planning company Food Karma Projects, which is behind events such as the Jazz Age Lawn Party, and the NYC Hot Sauce Expo, is hosting dinner series at the farm called Food Karma Feasts which will pair award winning chefs with state farms for farm-to-table style meals that will take place at the Farm on Kent.
The dinner series takes place every two weeks on Thursday evenings starting on July 16 and continuing on into August. The line up so far includes a dinner prepared by the chef at Fatty Cue and Hill Country BBQ, Robbie Richter; George Weld and Evan Hanczor from Egg Restaurant preparing recipes from their cookbook; A cider themed dinner from Aaron Burr Ciders; and a whiskey and pork themed dinner courtesy Van Brunt Stillhouse and Fleisher’s Craft Butchery respectively.
The Farm on Kent is also offering volunteer hours for those in the community who’d like to pitch in. In addition they’re launching a program called Magic Box. Instead of a regular CSA, the Magic Box is a curated selection of vegetables and other ingredients chosen by the chef at the Farm on Kent along with Sweets and Watson.
“We will have a lot more produce this year compared to the last,” said Sweets. “We’re growing tomatoes, eggplants, kale, and everything is looking great so far.”
Two Trees Management has also made room for a bike park at the same lot. The Velosolutions Brooklyn Bike Park is now the first in the country to feature a paved pumptrack.
“We are excited to kick off a third season of the summer pop-up park for the Williamsburg community, this year even closer to the waterfront,” said Jed Walentas, Principal at Two Trees Management. “We encourage everyone to try out North America’s first paved pumptrack and enjoy delicious fresh fruits and vegetables through the Farm on Kent.”
The Farm on Kent is open to the public Tue-Fri 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sat-Sun 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., the Bike Park will be open Sat-Sun 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., for more information on both visit http://www.northbrooklynfarms.com/ and http://brooklynbikepark.org/ respectively.