Oktoberfest SuperFun & a Taste of Gowanus

Celebrate the end of the Gowanus Dredgers' 19th season with Octoberfest

Oktoberfest SuperFun & a Taste of Gowanus

Gowanus Dredgers Canoe Club | Gowanus Canal

Celebrate the end of the Gowanus Dredgers' 19th season advocating for a clean canal and vibrant shoreline with fun, family friendly activities along the waterway and shoreline on Saturday, October 27, 2018, from 2:00pm to 6:00pm.

  • DARE to Taste Gowanus food from our local makers with samples of small delights made and sold in Gowanus
  • Join the Troll Hunt (a 2 person effort) by navigating our canoes under bridges and in and out of turning basins
  • Compete in the Toxic Beer Barrel Race along the esplanade, moving the barrels with canoe paddles
  • Touch, smell but don't eat our baby oysters growing in Gowanus at 3pm
  • Stories and sea shanties of pre-Civil War Black sailors with Vienna Carroll 4-6pm


The Baby Oysters

The Billion Oyster Project (BOP) is an effort to restore a sustainable oyster population and to foster awareness, affinity, and understanding of the Harbor and urban waterways by engaging New Yorkers directly in the work of restoring one billion oysters.

Oyster reefs once covered more than 220,000 acres of the Hudson River estuary. They provided valuable ecosystem services to the region by filtering water, providing habitat for other marine species and attenuating wave energy. Today, oysters are functionally extinct in the Harbor as a result of over-harvesting, dredging, and pollution. The absence of oysters has impaired our estuary’s ability to clean the water and absorb excess nitrogen; the loss of reefs has reduced protective habitat, destabilized the sea floor and left our shoreline vulnerable to destructive wave action.

Billion Oyster Project aims to reverse these effects by bringing oysters and their reef habitat back to New York Harbor. Restoring oysters and reefs will, over time, restore our local marine ecosystem’s natural mechanisms for maintaining itself, resulting in cleaner water and greater biodiversity. Gowanus were once abundant in our waterway and accoring to the Journal of Jasper Danckaerts, once grew to be a foot long (p. 53) and delicious!

Moreover, restoration without education is temporary, so we are engaging students and the general public in this work will build a culture of stewardship and a more robust understanding and appreciation of the Harbor for future generations.

The Gowanus Dredgers are thrilled to be participating in the Billion Oyster Project in the Gowanus with our very own oysters! Jean-Dominique Bonnet and Delancey Nelson have begun a monthly monitoring and tracking of the oysters growth. Stay tuned to learn more about the progress of the oysters as they enjoy their new home in the Gowanus.

Recently, Clams were discovered growing under Hamilton Avenue Bridge and we expect more mollusks to populate Gowanus as our water quality improves.


Vienna Carroll is a singer, playwright, actor, historian and herbalist.

Saturday, October 27th 2018 4:00pm to 6:00pm

Vienna Carroll is a Griot, a singing storyteller and will share forgotten stories and sea shanties of pre-Civil War Black sailors at the Gowanus Canal. Her musical performance celebrates the conclusion of the Gowanus Dredgers' 19th season at our Oktoberfest festival.

Vienna learned music from the Black Ladies of her youth including her fearsome great grandmother who enjoyed playing country guitar to Minnie Pearl's radio show every Saturday night but only strictly Pentecostal chords on Sundays. Vienna formalized her cultural studies with a BA in African American Studies at Yale University. Her art challenges deeply held stereotypes about the realities of Black family, love and resistance during slavery, and explores the role of music as a part of the everyday reality of antebellum life.

Ken Curtin retired after 45 years of work at disasters and in refugee camps. He now sings the songs he learned in his well-spent youth and will be performing as well.



Beyond Brooklyn

On Saturday, May 18, Brooklynites will see the entire D-Day Squadron fly in formation from Oxford, CT and around the Statue of Liberty. ©Mark D Phillips

It’s been 75-years since the skies were filled with C-47s on their way to France to begin the D-Day invasion.

Nina O'Brien dominated the US Nationals bringing home four National Championships ©Mark D Phillips

The White Mountains of New Hampshire are some of the most beautiful outdoor scenery across the country. There was a time when the world came to Waterville Valley for some of the best skiiers and skiing in the United States.