ORIGINAL STORY: We’ve heard that a fire erupted at the Brighton Beach Islamic Center at 230 Neptune Avenue (at Brighton 8th Street) around 8:30 a.m. We are heading out to the scene to find out more. Look to our Twitter feed for the latest updates.
UPDATE (11:21 a.m.): Sometimes it’s nice to feel like an idiot. Today is one of those days.
I received a voicemail regarding the supposed fire at the Islamic Center of Brighton Beach from a reader who said she heard from her friend that the center “might have been blown up. But whatever it is, it’s on fire and all the windows have been blown out.” I confirmed that there was indeed a fire at that address on Gothamist Maps, posted the info I had, and ran out to see how bad the damage was.
Thankfully, it was minimal, and the damage was not to the Islamic Center but to the attached restaurant. New Shama Restaurant’s (very friendly) owner told us it was a minor incident. They had noticed some smoke coming from their stove’s ventilation shaft (to the right in the photo above), and called the FDNY. It was quickly put out. The religious center was not involved at all and did not suffer any damage.
I like not having to write bad news, so I celebrated by picking up a tamale verde from a street vendor. It was delicious.