Kids Draw the News: Children in the Beer Garden

New Assignment

Kids Draw the News

Children depict current events.

The owner of a new bar in Brooklyn had an idea about how to increase business: invite customers to bring their children.

The bar, Greenwood Park, which includes a large outdoor area with picnic tables, has been a hit, but some people say children shouldn’t hang out in bars, and some customers don’t want to deal with strollers or rambunctious kids while they’re having a beer. Other people, though, say there’s no harm in children seeing grown-ups have a beer or two.

Here is an article about children in the beer garden. You may illustrate any aspect of the story you wish.

To submit drawings by children 12 years of age and under, follow the instructions here: Submit Artwork »


The Last Assignment

Thanks to all of you who illustrated our story about traffic school for cyclists.

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A Good Deed Goes Unthanked

Dear Diary:

I was on the train on a night in mid-July and noticed a neon blur. A woman had walked by me in one of those flowing, blood-orange dresses made out of some stretchy material.

Every new Long Island Rail Road train has these jutting armrests — the most horrible design flaw ever. Well, I was sitting in the aisle seat when the tail of her dress caught onto my armrest and it began to pull, and pull, and pull.

Everybody around me acted as if we were deep-sea fishing and a marlin had just taken the bait. Hands went for the caught hem, as it stretched an impossible five feet, but mine got there first. Right as I unhooked it, saving her from the worst commuter wardrobe malfunction ever, she turned about and looked right at me.

The bottom of her dress was caught between my fingers. I waited an impossible one, two, three seconds in silence. Waiting for a thank-you, a handshake, an acknowledgment that I had just saved the day — but her face darkened. I looked at me through her eyes and opened my fingers. The dress snapped back, acting as if nothing had happened.

The doors opened as she said, “YOU FILTHY PIG!!!” and stormed out. Silence … Doors closed … then deafening laughter filled the whole train.


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Mourning Wisconsin Shooting Victims, in New York

Amritpal Singh of Queens, right, and others held up images of the victims, including an injured police officer, of the recent shooting at a Sikh temple in Oak Creek, Wis., as they took part in a vigil Wednesday in Union Square Park.

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A Brooklyn Block in Bloom

There are purple petunias, pink begonias and magenta New Guinea impatiens in front of Maureen Facey and Marian Facey-Boone’s home on Lincoln Road in Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, Brooklyn.

But an unassuming fern is the perennial that the sisters, twins, are most proud of.

The ferns in their garden, they say, were first planted at their old home in Starrett City, Brooklyn, under the watchful eye of their mother, an avid gardener who has since died. When Ms. Facey-Boone, 50, moved to Lincoln Road more than a decade ago, she brought the ferns with her.

The green thumbs that the sisters inherited –- and the ferns they moved across Brooklyn –- were recognized on Wednesday when their block, Lincoln Road between Rogers and Bedford Avenues, was named winner, for the second time, of the Greenest Block in Brooklyn contest, an annual competition administered by the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.

Awards are also handed out for top commercial block, greenest storefront, window box, street tree bed and community garden.

The winners of the competition, now in its 18th year, are selected based on a variety of criteria, including creativity, colorfulness and resident participation. All three were evident on Lincoln Road: trees were in bloom, bushes were neatly trimmed and potted flowers dotted nearly every stoop.

Nearly 200 residential blocks from across the borough competed this year, said Robin Simmen, director of GreenBridge, the horticultural program at the botanic garden that oversees the competition.

And Lincoln Road, she said, was a standout among even the strongest competitors for the variety of flora that line the block’s brownstones.

“It’s like the Garden of Eden,” she said, turning to admire the scenery.

This stretch of Lincoln Road also won the award in 2009, and it earned top honors again because it improved the level of participation among residents, Ms. Simmen said.

Tolonda Tolbert, president of the block association, said about 75 of the 80 houses on the block displayed greenery this year, up from about 60 in 2009.

Ms. Tolbert, 43, said the participation increased in part through events like “Wine and Dirt,” which she held on her stoop in May to encourage people to pot plants for the summer (the drinks may been an incentive for some people).

She also praised the block’s “green team” — volunteers who kept plants watered and pruned throughout the year while residents were on vacation or elderly residents had trouble maintaining their gardens.

“It’s really about setting up a culture of ‘I’m taking care of something,’” Ms. Tolbert said.

Ms. Facey said that winning was gratifying, but that the greenery and spirit of the block were most important.

“When tomorrow comes,” she said, “we’re still going to enjoy our plants.”

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