The first of its kind, the Brooklyn Children’s Museum paved the way for many to follow. Slated to be New York City’s first “green” museum, it integrates environmentally responsible building materials. Actively engaging in the education of sustainability and energy conservation, a fair amount of the hands-on exhibits encourage the appreciation of the bounty of plants and animals that surround the Brooklyn area and beyond. In addition, some of the green features of this NYC children’s museum also make for awesome visual appeal and presentations. Focusing on energy efficiency and a reduction in waste by using many recycled building materials, the grounds are awe inspiring. While browsing around, be sure to check out all of the interesting exhibits where a substantial amount are also made of recycled materials; also, here you will find Indian artifacts, a weapons and armor collection, and a doll collection that any little princess would be sure to enjoy. A little bit of something for everyone. Grab the family and head on down for a day of learning and culture, and then head on over to one of the many nearby parks for some relaxation. Nearing the end of your fun-filled day you might want to head over to the Brower Park Branch Library for some family reading.
The Brooklyn Museum of Art is a living edifice dedicated to, yes, paintings and sculptures, but also a collection of some of the greatest innovators and visionaries ever to grace the world. Located within the 560,000-square-foot Beaux-Arts building, the Brooklyn Museum of Art is one of the oldest and largest art museums in the entire country. Inside, visitors are greeted by some of the most amazing artwork from artists such as Andy Warhol, Fred Tomaselli, Lorna Simpson and more. Guest lectures and special demonstrations are constantly available, which gives the patrons a firsthand look at how some of this wonderful artwork has been created. The beauty of the Brooklyn Museum of Art is not just the work inside but the availability of traveling exhibits that frequent it as well. In Summer 2012, the Brooklyn Museum of Art will be featuring the works of Keith Haring, The New York Journalism of Djuna Barnes, and the spectacular collection of Ancient Egyptian sculptures and amulets known as “Body Parts.” Along with the Botanical Gardens and various other attractions, the Brooklyn Museum of Art is amongst the centerpieces of culture in Brooklyn and in the world.
Do you love trains? Did you ever wonder about how the subway system was developed? Do you love seeing a part of New York that has influenced the world? If you answered yes to any of these questions then the New York Transit Museum is for you. This Cadman Plaza tourist attraction is home to one of the most uniquely vast transportation histories in the world. A visit to this museum gives you an opportunity to experience firsthand what this historic transit system is all about. Housed within ist walls are many different subway cars, engines and displays, all with their own story, and all showcasing the rich history of New York City transit. One can marvel in yesteryear with the ads from the early 1900s or discover the secrets of conduction, filtering and green energy through the interactive displays. The museum also offers full workshops and guided tours where patrons can further their knowledge and experience live the evolution of one of the most written about phenomenon in the world. This free Brooklyn Museum is open to the public and truly showcases how great Brooklyn has become in enriching its visitors and discovering the culture of New York City.
Locked behind the heavy wood gates that define this military stronghold lies New York City’s only US Army museum. Built within New York’s original Fort Hamilton and overlooking the bluffs, the museum is designed for those who are fans of military artifacts, military art and weapon collections. The Harbor Defense Museum showcases the very same United States Army weapons, uniforms, small arms, cannons and accoutrements that served the soldiers stationed at the fort from the 18th century to the present. With Spring 2012 comes several fascinating exhibitions including the “Battle of Brooklyn”, “Firepower: Infantry Weapons of World War II”, and the ever-popular “In Defense of New York.” For those a little more proactive about their military history, located just a stone’s throw away from all major transit lines, this Brooklyn museum offers several demonstrations that make you feel like you are on the front line, including how to hand load a cannon, and a fully accessible library with archives of Fort Hamilton’s storied past. At the very entrance to New York City and a stable time portal to America’s past, the Harbor Defense Museum is an amazing opportunity for civilian and military enthusiasts alike.
As diverse and unique as any structure in Brooklyn, the Wyckoff Farmhouse Museum is a part of American Culture that you cannot afford to miss. Revered as the oldest standing building in New York City and a National Landmark, the Wyckoff Farmhouse is a stunning example of America's colonial past, nestled into the beautiful Brooklyn landscape. During its guided tours, patrons are able to learn about the rich history of the Wyckoff Farmhouse, from its use as a Dutch farm to the impact the farmhouse had on African-American culture. There are several different tours to experience including an in-depth look at the construction of the farmhouse and how it compares to today’s society. The more hands-on exhibits are truly the main attraction of the Wyckoff Farmhouse, offering a variety of colonial tasks including butter churning, herbs and sachet making, and crop examination. If you are fortunate enough to visit the Wyckoff Farmhouse in the Summer 2012 you will have the opportunity to see the organic lifestyle surrounding the colonial days and even participate in a scavenger hunt through the on-site garden. For an experience into Brooklyn's treasured culture and a clock-turning look at the past, make sure you visit the Wyckoff Farmhouse Museum.
One of the richest human cultures in New York, if not the world, is that of Judaism. With a history dating back over 3000 years, the Judaic culture has developed one of the most treasured and influential civilizations in human history. With The Jewish Children's Museum, Jews and Non-Jews alike have an opportunity to experience hands-on exhibits teaching all about creation, holy days observed, the kosher lifestyle and many other cultural topics. When walking through this vast building, it is quite apparent that much thought and financing went into making an enjoyable learning experience. The museum strives to open minds by offering a experiential programming that enhances the knowledge and appreciation of all Jewish culture. Some features of the museum include a Jewish game show, with audience participation, movies shown in a mini-theater, and many interactive displays that highlight daily Jewish life. As summer 2012 approaches, The Jewish Children's Museum will even be offering craft making to coincide with the approaching Shavuot, or giving of the Torah, holiday. For these interactive learning experiences that opens minds and entertains all, one simply has to visit this Brooklyn museum located in the peak of Crown Heights and easily accessible to everyone in New York City.
The cornerstone of Brooklyn’s enlightened history and the pinnacle of museum life, the Brooklyn Historical Society takes everything that is Brooklyn and makes it vibrant and tangible for all to experience. The Brooklyn Historical Society is not just a museum; it’s the very vehicle designed to preserve and present the past. Every single aspect of Brooklyn’s history is represented within the Queen Anne styled building and offers something for everybody. If you are a baseball buff then you can relive the days of Duke Snyder and the Brooklyn Dodgers through the sports exhibit. If you are from a Jewish heritage you can learn more about the significant history of the Jews in New York through the Brooklyn Jewish Historical Initiative. Even the most prominent New Yorkers are featured within the Brooklyn Historical Society, giving you an opportunity to dive into the immense history of New York and how Brooklyn’s populace played its part in setting that stage. Summer 2012 marks the time of remodeling of the Brooklyn Historical Society which will further expand its walls and give even more people an opportunity to see the real Brooklyn. The Brooklyn Historical Society is one of the most awe-inspiring and enlightening experiences available in New York City and needs to be visited live in order to be appreciated fully.
Weeksville is more than a stuffy museum documenting the history of African-American society in Brooklyn; it is, rather, a community dedicated to the history of free African-American communities. When you visit make sure you give yourself enough time to enjoy a variety of experiences including live jazz concerts, dance ceremonies, guest lectures and more. If a more historical approach is your preference, feel free to tour the actual hidden society; many of the first buildings in Weeksville have been preserved so you can experience the community as it was when it was first established. The beauty of Weeksville is that it is constantly growing and changing. A visit tomorrow may be completely different from a visit today which means that you are bound to find something new and valuable every time you go. It is quite obvious that the Weeksville Road Houses are host to many fun and enlightening activities that further demonstrate the African-American culture. It is a simple drive from any of New York City’s borroughs, making it a must stop for those interested in this rooted past and looking to experience one of the truly great Brooklyn Museums available in New York City.
Housed aboard the 1914 Lehigh Valley Barge #79, a visit to this New York City museum will definitely leave you standing on your sea legs. Take a step into a little slice of history. Learn about maritime heritage and the importance of the great water highway for commerce. With public access to waterfront piers and recreational activities a plenty, there is never a dull moment here, you might even catch a show. Admission is free! This great place strives to make things available free and low cost to the public. With the amount of amazing art, community support, involvement and opportunities that this Brooklyn museum provides, you might consider giving a donation. Across the way, at the nearby Redhook Homeport, stands a beautiful garden, a stunning pier where the ocean seems never ending and the most picturesque view of the sunset over Lady Liberty that you will find anywhere. A must for summer 2012 travelers. Vacation photos will make you the envy of all your friends. So come down today and experience the wonder that is the Waterfront Museum of Brooklyn. On your way home, do not forget to stop by Steve's Authentic Key Lime Pie, a true treat just one tenth of a mile away and an easy walk after a beautiful day.