NYC SPOTS-September

Lest we forget that Brooklyn is indeed on this wonderful and long island of ours, this month’s column (like last month’s) features some places you might want to check out in NYC’s most rapidly growing borough. See for yourself and save on parking/commuting fees too.

709 Lorimer Street, Williamsburg

While I’m not sure I know who Pete is, I’m pretty positive that his figurative snacks will charm even the most discerning palate. Take, for instance, New York’s most diverse and interesting reading series complete with appearances from indie rock stars like Sufjan Stevens and other nifty literary types. How about the Classical Candy Series, which combines the beauty of the cello (and other classical instruments) with the beast of beer? There’s something live going on just about every night in a tiny (but lovely) performance space (Is it a train car or not?) that my friend and fellow songwriter Seth Berkowitz refers to as “a dream of the 1930s.” Dig into the sweetness.

484 Union Avenue, Williamsburg (south side)

Though probably not all it’s hyped up to be, Union Pool is still a Williamsburg staple. Because of the raucous late night atmosphere and the less than desirable overall “bar-ness” of the place, perhaps the best time of the day to visit is the summer or early fall Saturday or Sunday late afternoon when you could calmly take in the “cool-ness” of the backyard space, which is adorned, last I checked, with an odd but tasty taco truck and fire pit. The latter is said to incite Lord of the Flies-esque dances by local hipsters followed by hours posing in the photo booth. Well, not really…but the photo booth is definitely worth checking out.

702 Union Street, Park Slope

Prior to writing this, I wasn’t sure how to spell bocce. Prior to my first visit to Union Hall, I wasn’t sure how to play it. You, too, can be the proud beneficiary of these fine additions to your strange talent repertoire by simply visiting this down to earth yet stylish Union Hall in beautiful Park Slope. Have you been to Park Slope recently? Ever? I’m warning you…you may fall in love with the brownstone-lined neighborhood with the perfect blend of community and hipness, which happens to be an apt description for perhaps the most underrated live music venue in New York City.

alan semerdjian

Alan Semerdjian is a writer, musician, English teacher, and occasional visual artist. Besides LI Pulse, his work has appeared in Newsday, Adbusters, Chain, The Lyric Review and numerous other print and online publications, anthologies, and chapbooks. His first full-length book of poetry is In the Architecture of Bone (Genpop Books 2009). You can visit him digitally at and find out about his music at