The warm sunshine, live music and delicious food all combined to make for the perfect Brooklyn summer afternoon.
On Sunday, Aug. 26 the Brighton Neighborhood Association (BNA), along with co-educational nonprofit Kiwanis International, presented the 42nd annual Brighton Beach Jubilee Festival. The event ran along Brighton Beach Avenue from Corbin Place to Coney Island Ave. heading down towards the beach.
The Jubilee is the neighborhood’s only fundraiser and has become a Brooklyn tradition that celebrates diversity. The multi-block festival features entertainment stages and blocks of merchandise and informational booths, as well as kiddie rides and an assortment of food.
Among those attending were City Comptroller Scott Stringer, state Sen. Diane Savino, Assemblymember Steven Cymbrowitz and City Councilmembers Chaim Deutsch and Mark Treyger.
Established 40 years ago, the Jubilee now attracts over 125,000 people every year. The Brighton Jubilee was created in 1977 by Pat Singer, founder of the BNA. The grass-roots organization was formed as a way of helping to restore the neighborhood.
“I am very proud of our 42nd Annual Brighton Jubilee,” Singer told this paper. “It’s a cultural kaleidoscope that celebrates our diversity as thousands come from all corners of our borough.”
According to Singer, Brighton Beach, once a predominantly Jewish community of mom-and-pop stores, has become more global as the large Russian population has now been joined by Pakistani, Turkish and Spanish-speaking residents all wanting to live the American dream.
The Jubilee also serves as a fundraiser for BNA, a nonprofit organization that strives for the betterment of the community.
“One of the traits of true leadership, as hard as it is, is bringing people together,” Treyger said. “And that’s exactly what Pat Singer has been able to do for many years with the awesome Brighton Jubilee. It was great to visit the Jubilee with my colleagues and so many friends. And even though I was a little frustrated that all of the cherry ponchiks (delicious Russian doughnuts) were sold out, I’ll head out to Brighton Beach this week to resolve the craving.”
The live entertainment featured a stage of Russian performers provided by RUSA Radio, a rock ‘n’ roll stage with Catherine Lau Hunt and her group Full Disclosure and singer Frankie Marra, performing a decades-spanning set of popular hits.
“Another year, another successful Brighton Beach Jubilee,” Savino said. “Congrats to Pat Singer and all her staff. Her hard work year-round is an integral part of the success of this community.”
The crowd reflected a diverse group of multicultural revelers, from toddlers to seniors, all enjoying the ethnic food and festivities. “The people tell me they love it and that makes it all worthwhile,” said Singer.