My impression is that this year's Brooklyn Day/Family Day in Sunset Park had many more booths, activities, and generally fun stuff than last year. My one regret is that I missed the majority of the music. There were a few Chinese dances, some Puerto Rican Bomba, and some amateur Rap performances. However, the music seemed to be all wrapped up by 2:30 PM. And I missed the swords! Hmph.
There was a lot to see otherwise, that's for sure. The Recreation Center's Guitar Program had a fantastic display of projects in the works. Monday through Thursday, anyone who is a member of the Rec Center can participate in this program. Call 718-965-6533 for more information. Materials and teaching and space are all provided by the Recreation Center's program. The Audio Program was also represented, and they were selling CDs.
There were blow-up jumpers (what are those called?) for younger kids, and there were hockey (NY Rangers!) and soccer and board games available for older kids. The most popular areas, as always, were the booths that were handing out free junk. Popcorn, ices, beach balls, balloons, plastic gadget necklaces, fans, bouncy balls...you get the idea.
The juggling stilt-walker with Challenge Early Intervention Center was chatty and friendly, the face-painters were doing their best to adorn children with hearts and Sponge Bobs, and the young people running the Adidas booth were trying to get the kids to BACK UP! because there were only so many bouncy balls to hand out.
The Petting Zoo was disturbing. No adult supervision meant that kids were feeding the animals hay and batting at the animals' faces to get a touch. Some kids were poking the hens with straw - and the cages were as small as the halal places on 3rd Ave or in the 30's. The hens were beautiful...red and white and speckled. At least the larger animals had some room to move away from the gate when they were being poked. The bunnies were also on top of each other. Sigh.
At least the ponies at the pony ride looked in decent condition. They certainly gave the children who rode them a thrill. No one noticed that the rides were just 45 seconds long. Still, not bad for a free ride.
A lot of kids were entertained by the board games and hula-hoops and soccer. That was encouraging. In fact, the Adidas booth only had kids in it for the bouncy balls; no one was watching the televised games.
Two very cool displays were courtesy of the FDNY and the Museum of Natural History. The Safety House let kids walk/crawl/roll through a house with smoke. All the kids seemed very interested and entertained when they emerged. The Museum trailer was also popular. It had displays from Zaire and North America and others. The teepee proved a popular photo opportunity.
The Sunset Park Rec Center and Grounds Staff did a great job staying on top of the trash and organizing the events. Happily, the weather also cooperated with sunshine and cool breezes.