YOU READ IT HERE FIRST: Local mariners have something to be happy about this New Year: the Department of Environmental Protection reversed course on plans to destroy a 78-year-old navigational aid between Manhattan Beach and Breezy Point that mariners say makes them safer and shows them the way home when gizmos can’t.
According to documents released under a Freedom of Information Law request filed by Sheepshead Bites, the New York City Department of Environmental Protection decided to leave a wastewater diffuser pipe that locals affectionately refer to as the “roundhouse” after sailors and other mariners objected to its removal.
“Comments received questioned whether it would be more advantageous to leave the existing outlet chamber in place,” DEP reps wrote to partnering agencies in a September 2012 letter. “If kept, it could serve as an underwater fish habitat and provide opportunity for sea birds to perch.”
It wasn’t just the environmentalists that the DEP sought to please; the agency determined the now defunct roundhouse served a crucial purpose for navigation, and as a marker for underwater infrastructure that could damage vessels.
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According to a release by the New York Times, the city environmental officials lifted an advisory on recreational water activity issued last month after Superstorm Sandy. The environmental advisory applied to the East River, Hudson River, New York Harbor, Jamaica Bay and the Kill Van Krull.
The advisory was put into effect after power outages caused wastewater treatment plants and pumping stations to discharge untreated wastewater in New York City waterways.
The recreational advisory urged against activities such as swimming, canoeing, kayaking, windsurfing or any other water activity that would entail possible direct contact with the water.
In related news, the Gateway National Recreational Area announced that it reopened both the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge and Great Kills Park, however Floyd Bennett Field is still closed.
None of those advisories stopped the local Brighton Beach resident featured above from testing out the cold waters of Brighton Beach by going for a risky swim six days before the advisory was lifted.
Aside from the destruction of Emmons Avenue’s waterfront bungalows, Hurricane Sandy also left disaster and devastation at Sheepshead Bay’s boating clubs.
The worst hit was the Sheepshead Bay Yacht Club (3076 Emmons Avenue), where boats, moorings and marinas all swept in from the ocean approximately 80 feet to the yacht clubs’s back porch, as you can see above.
Keep reading, and view more photos.
The New York City Department of Environmental Protection has issued the following advisory:
Due to flooding and power related shutdowns caused by Hurricane Sandy, wastewater treatment plants and pumping stations have discharged untreated wastewater into New York City waterways. The New York City Department of Health & Mental Hygiene advises that direct contact with the Hudson River, East River, New York Harbor, Jamaica Bay and the Kill Van Kull for recreational activities such as swimming, canoeing, kayaking, windsurfing or any other water activity that would entail possible direct contact with the water should be avoided until further notice.
The Department of Environmental Protection is responding to the impacts caused by Hurricane Sandy on its waste water treatment facilities and will monitor water quality conditions through testing to verify when these water bodies are safe for recreational uses.
As you flip through the photos in this article, you’ll need to remind yourself: yes, this is still New York City.
It’s an easy fact to forget on the waters of Jamaica Bay and, just outside the Rockaway inlet, the Atlantic Ocean. Homes seem few and far between. Greenery is lush. And, oh, the quiet is so… quiet.
But on a clear, sunny day like June 24, the day of the 26th Annual Blessing of the Fleet, the Freedom Tower and Manhattan skyline loom in the background, an impressive reminder of place.
The Blessing of the Fleet is an annual tradition in which all of Sheepshead Bay’s yacht and boating club members converge in the open waters, sail through the Bay, and past the Emmons Avenue yacht clubs. There, leaders of various faiths dole out wishes of good fortune and safety to more than 100 participating vessels.
Find out more about the event, and view our photos!
Photo by Ned Berke
This is a paid announcement from Miramar Yacht Club (3050 Emmons Avenue), one of Sheepshead Bay’s premier boating communities.
If you’re interested in sailing, then Miramar Yacht Club is the place to learn!
Escape to an area where sailing re-awakens your senses. Feel the southerly breezes that will fill your sails and your day with experiences that make you feel vital and alive. Experience fishing in an ocean filled with snappers, blues, bass, and fluke.
But first, learn the skills you need to get on the water. Miramar offers a one-day course, packed with four hours of sailing instruction, a demonstration on an actual boat and hands-on learning. The class also comes with a colorful booklet to get you started, a guide and lunch.
The best part? By taking this class you also earn a free afternoon of real sailing in our Seek & Sail event in June. All you have to do is sign up for our class this weekend, and one of our captains will take you out on the water and put your skills to the test in June (exact date TBD).
The class is Sunday, May 6, from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m at our 3050 Emmons Avenue location. Cost is $60 per student, or $100 for a couple.
To register email Sail@MiramarYC.com or call Irene at (718) 743-5823.
This is a paid sale announcement from Miramar Yacht Club. If you own a business and would like to announce a special offer to tens of thousands of locals, e-mail us at advertising [at] sheepsheadbites [dot] com.
Click to see the NY Times' video on meeting people in Jamaica Bay
The New York Times posted a feel-good piece this morning about the Southern Brooklyn waterfront, dubbed “New York City Riviera.”
The reporters took a boat tour of the Jamaica Bay waterfront, pulling up alongside barges, boats and marinas to talk to those who live, work or play on the water. And what they found was a diversity consistent with the rest of Southern Brooklyn: a Jamaican family stationed on a houseboat; an Orthodox Jew in mid-prayer, dismissing himself at the end of his interview to deal with a hangover; a Ukrainian fisherman; a contractor from the Alps.
Despite the various backgrounds, those interviewed agreed on one thing at least: the waters of Jamaica Bay – stretching from Sheepshead Bay to the Rockaways and farther into Queens – is New York City’s pristine outback for outdoors-men and mariners.
“It doesn’t come any better than that. You wake up every day to this beauty and the seagulls,” said one of the interviewees.
“They say you have to enjoy the moment — this is the moment,” said the contractor, while preparing to inspect the Marine Parkway-Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge.
Those of us in Sheepshead Bay sometimes forget the stunning resources that border our community. Do you get out into Jamaica Bay and the Gateway National Recreation Area often? What do you like to do when you’re there?
Source: Darny via Flickr
If you’ve noticed a heap o’ work being done around the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, it’s because the one-time title-holder of longest suspension bridge in the world is getting a few new coats of paint.
According to Courier Life, the $19-million paint job will take two years. To start, they’re covering the stanchions before sandblasting rust and lead paint off of the structure. The covering will prevent the lead from hitting the water. Then they’ll fix any damage to the steel structure before covering it with three new coats of paint.
The contractor is bringing barges to station around the bridge’s towers, not far from where the U.S. Coast Guard has created a 110-yard safety zone after local diver Gene Ritter found a stash of more than 1,500 sunken munitions.
Are you a local boater? Will the work on the Verrazano, combined with the Coast Guard’s “safety zone” be an obstacle in your trips through the narrows?
Source: New York Daily News
One of the meaningless mental notes I’ve made during my life is, while watching old war movies that take place on ships or submarines, I have noticed that there’s almost always some endearing and lovable tough guy aboard the vessel endowed with a thick Brooklyn accent (John Garfield and Dane Clark in “Destination Tokyo” come to mind).
I mention it only because, as a massive convoy of Sailors, Marines and Coast Guardsmen sails triumphantly into New York City today in anticipation of Fleet Week, May 26 to 31, the annual celebration of all things maritime, the impressive week-long roster of activities features but one measly two-hour event in Brooklyn, with dozens being held all over Manhattan, Long Island and New Rochelle. Where’s the love?
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The Miramar Yacht Club at 3050 Emmons Avenue has released their Sailing Basics programs for this spring and summer.
There will be an opportunity to explore sailing on Sunday May 1, at 11 a.m. There is also a free seek and sail event on June 18.
Prices for the program are $75 for students and $120 for couples who register together. To register email Sail@MiramarYC.com or call (718)743-5823.