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Photographers both professional and amateur are invited to enter the “Peace in a Frame” competition for a chance to win money and a spot in an art exhibition.

Judges will be looking for works that “uniquely reflect an effort or a positive outcome of peace building, at a local or global scale.”

The contest is sponsored by the Turkish Cultural Center, the Brooklyn branch of which is located at 245 Avenue U, and is run in conjunction with”Peacebuilding through Education,” an international conference which aims to promote harmony in diverse cultural settings in the United States.

Eight of the top submissions in the contest will be awarded cash prizes. The deadline for submission is August 31.

Source: gbfd.net

In 1922, after a fire destroyed a house in Gerritsen Beach, residents came together to form the Gerrittsen Beach Fire Department, the only all-volunteer fire department in Brooklyn.

The GBFD is celebrating its 90th anniversary with a journal compiling photos and stories of the “Vollies” throughout the years. From their press release:

Everybody who has ever lived in Gerrittsen Beach has seen the Vollies in action whether it be a summer brush fire, investigating odors, operating at a car accident or even in your own house treating your family or plugging a broken pipe. In order to make this journal a success we need to hear your stories. Please share any photos or personal stories you may have with us so we can document the past ninety years of Brooklyn’s only Volunteer Fire Department.

The journals will be available at the 90th Anniversary Dinner on October 20 at AOH Hall 2750 Gerritsen Avenue.

The Vollies are also encouraging local businesses to take out ads in the journal to help its funding.

Please send any photos, stories, ad inquiries or questions to Pat Klein at journal@gbfd.net or call 718-332-9292 and leave a message with the dispatcher on duty.

File:Marty Markowitz by David Shankbone.jpg

Source: Wikimedia Commons

This week Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver announced he’d support a casino in Coney Island. Wednesday, Marty Markowitz began a coalition backing gambling in Coney Island, according to the Daily News.

“Back in January when I called for casino gambling, at that moment I was like playing blackjack and asking the dealer to hit on 20, but now the idea of casino gambling is coming up aces,” said Markowitz.

Markowitz believes a casino would bring jobs and revenues to the area, but other politicians haven’t been so quick to back the idea because of moral reasons.

State Senator Dov Hikind is opposed to legalized gambling, citing the impact it may have on people in the community.

“I’m deeply concerned about the repercussions in our community. It shouldn’t just be about raising money,” said Hikind.

Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz has voiced similar concerns, but said he would support a casino as long as money is set aside for compulsive gambling treatment programs.

“I support the principle of casino gambling to provide additional revenues to New York State,” said Cymbrowitz.

In order for a bill to be passed to legalize gambling in the city, the state legislature must pass a constitutional amendment to approve the casinos, and then it must be approved by voters.

Coney Island will also have to compete with other locations such as Willets Point in Queens and the Catskills.

Local State Senator Diane Savino backs the casino, but cautioned that legal gambling in New York City is still a long way from becoming a reality.

“The earliest gambling could come to the boardwalk would be Januray, 2014..I think we’re getting ahead of ourselves.”

Twenty years ago, a Sheepshead Bay native took one of the neighborhood’s most popular summer pastimes – handball – and turned it into a beach sport.

Mark Miller, born in Sheepshead and raised in Fire Island, was bouncing a ball inside his music studio. After the ball took an unusual bounce off the inside corner of his wall, he decided to create a game built on reflexes.

What Miller invented soon evolved into is known as “Trangleball,” and if you head down to the beaches of Fire Island in the summer, or perhaps even the Czech Republic, you’re likely to see people playing it surrounded by onlookers.

The official version of the sport involves six people split into two teams, standing in a circle surrounding a yard-high, wooden pyramid. One of them bounces the ball off the face of the pyramid either towards a teammate or towards the opponents. Scoring occurs when a player fails to catch the ball within the boundaries, or steps outside the boundaries with the ball. The game is scored like volleyball and played to 11 points.

Trangleball has steadily become more popular through the years because its easy to learn and fun for anyone who likes to catch and throw, said its creator. Miller has promoted the game as much as possible throughout the years, but he doesn’t directly sell the ball and pyramid.

“I’m trying to sell the concept of the sport and educate them, I’m not trying to sell the game on my own,” he told Newsday years ago.

According to Trangleball’s official website, in the early 90′s the New York Department of Corrections purchased 10 games and Miller went to prisons to teach the game to inmates. Then in 2000, a student at a university in the Czech Republic wrote a thesis on Trangleball, and Miller traveled to “The European Sports Conference” to do a 10-day workshop on the sport. Since then, Trangleball has spread to other places like New Zealand, Japan, and France.

Miller has said in the past that he plans to continue promoting the game and creating different variations. Check out the detailed rules on the Trangleball website, and watch the instructional video for more info.

A footprint left at the site of the vandalism last week, believed to belong to the culprit.

Our report last week on the anti-Semitic graffiti at the Holocaust Memorial was met with swift responses from elected officials, and so far one measure has been taken to ensure the safety of the park, with possibly more to follow.

The Flatbush Shomrim safety patrol van has been parked outside the memorial, monitoring the site with live cameras since last Thursday, and unmarked patrol cars have been asked to keep an eye on the area. The Shomrim patrol van is needed for different incidents around the city and will not remain at the site, but permanent cameras in and around the memorial and in Manhattan Beach is a possibility.

According to Chaim Deutsch, Chief of Operations for Councilman Michael Nelson and founder of the Flatbush Shomrim, Nelson has asked the state for funding to install two cameras in Manhattan Beach, one by the Holocaust Memorial and another by the neighborhood’s other entrance.

“There are only two ways to get out of Manhattan Beach, and one of them is by the Memorial,” said Deutsch. “If a child goes missing, we would be able to look at the cameras and see if they exited the area. Some people are opposed to the cameras because they don’t want to be recorded, but the idea has been gaining support in the community.”

“After an incident the first thing you want to do is show visibility,” he added. “That is why we have the van there, to send a message that it is being monitored. For the future, we would like cameras installed to be a deterrent for future incidents.”

Deutsch said the initiative is still in the works. Aside from the two cameras monitoring Manhattan Beach’s entrances and exits – a plan devised shortly after the Leiby Kletzky incident by Deutsch, Nelson and the Manhattan Beach’s civic groups – local pols and candidates have suggested putting remotely monitored surveillance cameras within the park itself.

Tonight at 10:00 p.m., tune in to SyFy and check out how a ghost terrorized a Gravesend family.

In the season premiere of Paranormal Witness, Gravesend resident Elaine Mercado explains how she and her family have been haunted by a “ghost bride” in their Queen Anne-style home near Avenue V.

“It started when my daughters found a really tiny dress in the attic,” explained the retired Coney Island Hospital nurse. “It was maybe a size 2, but short. It creeped me out completely. They brought it down wrapped in newspaper from the 1950′s, and I said get rid of it.”

After that, Mercado says things got even creepier. The family would hear their names whispered in a menacing voice and would have their blankets thrown from their beds. They also saw shadows and started having nightmares.

A neighbor confirmed that a young bride died in the attic of the home many years ago, but under mysterious circumstances.

The family ended up calling in SyFy’s medium who… well, I guess you’ll have to watch to find out.

Former New York Knicks icon John Starks stopped by the Kings Bay Y (3495 Nostrand Avenue) on Thursday, but instead of showing off his basketball skills he came to show some local youngsters the importance of reading.

The New York Knicks Read to Achieve program, in partnership with Cablevision’s Power to Learn education initiative, teamed up with the Kings Bay Y Summer Camp to host several dozen campers for a reading of Cam Jansen’s “The Basketball Mystery.”

The reading was followed by a prize giveaway, where a few lucky campers won Knicks tickets, hats and t-shirts. Afterwards, the basketball star signed autographs and took time to answer questions and talk about the program.

“Reading is so important to becoming successful and to know what is going on in the world. Growing up my mother encouraged me to read, and I wouldn’t be where I am today without that encouragement,” said Starks, who has participated in Read to Achieve for the last seven years.

The former Knicks ball handler will always be remembered most for his dunk over Michael Jordan in the 1993 NBA playoffs, and although he played for several teams, he maintains his connection with New York.

“I played for four different colleges and a few different NBA teams, but New York CIty has always been my favorite place to be.”

The event was made possible by Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein.

“Getting kids to read in the summer can be tough. We’re thankful that Cablevision and the New York Knicks decided to bring their reading program to our area,” said Weinstein.

Starks has been traveling around New York with the Read to Achieve program, and was happy to visit the Y. “I grew in a gym like this. It’s great that kids in this area have a facility like this where they can get off the streets and play some games.”

Source: skampy/Flickr

Can’t get enough of bowling, yet trying to save up for overdue rent, that car you always wanted, or college tuition?

Here’s your chance!

In celebration of the first ever National Bowling Day this Saturday, August 11, Shell Lanes and other bowling centers across the country will allow visitors to bowl for free. So gather your friends and be one of the first to hit the bowling lanes before the crowds.

To bowl free of charge, head over to GoBowling.com and access a free game coupon, or “like” GoBowling’s Facebook page. After that, all you have to do is stop by Shell Lanes on 1 Bouck Court (McDonald Avenue, south of Avenue X) from 9 a.m. till closing on Saturday and enjoy your free game.

If you don’t live close enough to Shell Lanes, there are many other bowling centers with this special offer. If you’re a resident of Bensonhurst, stop by Maple Lanes at 1570 60th Street to participate in this all-day celebration.

Photo by Justin Santoro

For the fifth year in a row, dozens gathered in Homecrest Playground (Homecrest Avenue and Williams Court) to play softball in remembrance of Anthony Senisi Jr., a 44-year old father of two who was tragically murdered six years ago.

Senisi was on his way home from a grocery store on Brighton 6th Street when he was stabbed in the back. He collapsed in front of his house in view of his son, and died in his father’s arms.

Making the crime even more senseless, authorities believed Senisi was mistaken for someone else while buying milk for his Sunday morning ritual of coffee with his daughter.

Read how the softball game came about, and view more photos.

FIshing 1973

DailyDOCUMERICA recently dug up this old photo of Plum Beach, taken in May 1973 by Coney Island native Arthur Tress. It looks to be a part of the same Tress series as the Plumb Beach photo we showed you – also from DailyDOCUMERICA – in early July.

Looks like they’re having fun, but considering they’re fishing from what appears to be the DEP outflow pump near Brigham Street – which was still active at the time – we really hope this couple decided not to eat any of the catches!

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