Brighton Beach

Brighton Beach Jubilee Festival attracts over 125,000

August 31, 2017 By John Alexander Brooklyn Daily Eagle
From left: Pat Singer holds a check presented to the Brighton Beach Neighborhood Association from former state Sen. Donald Halperin. From left: Eddie Mack, district manager of Community Board 13; event organizer Pat Singer; Daniel Abramson from the Mayor’s Office; and Sherry Falcone, president of the Brighton Beach Neighborhood Association. Eagle photos by Arthur De Gaeta

Festival Celebrates the International Language of Music

On Sunday the Brighton Neighborhood Association (BNA), along with co-educational nonprofit Kiwanis International, presented the 41st annual Brighton Beach Jubilee Festival. The event, which celebrates music and food, ran along Brighton Beach Avenue from Corbin Place to Coney Island Avenue 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. Music was provided by Frankie Marra along with other Brooklyn-based bands.

“Many elected officials and candidates attended this popular event, shook hands with potential voters and learned more about their concerns,” said Democratic District leader Ari Kagan. Among those attending were mayoral candidate Sal Albanese, Public Advocate candidate David Eisenbach, City Comptroller Scott Stringer, state Sen. Diane Savino, state Assemblymember Steven Cymbrowitz, City Councilmembers Chaim Deutsch and Mark Treyger, Acting District Attorney Eric Gonzalez and Brooklyn Civil Court candidates Patria Frias-Colon and David Pepper.

Established 40 years ago, the Jubilee now attracts more than 125,000 people every year and is dedicated to bridging the communication gap through the international language of music.

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 restore a neighborhood that had fallen into disrepair.

“The Brighton Jubilee was established at that time to raise the image of the community,” said Singer. “Over the past four decades, the event has evolved into a celebration of Brighton Beach’s diversity as immigrants settled into this seaside community setting down roots in our democratic society.”

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 Pakistan, 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.

Singer described the diversity of this year’s Jubilee as especially profound and meaningful in light of what’s going on the world today, with vendors and participants forming what Singer called a “melting pot” of cultures with their colorful costumes, social traditions and ethnic foods.  She referred to it as “a reflection of our democracy at its best with a sea of people from all spectrums of society.”

The live entertainment featured a stage of Russian performers provided by RUS-USA Radio and a rock ‘n’ roll stage of populated by Bay Ridge musicians along with a stage of musicians from Peru and Ecuador.

The food was also eclectic from Jamaican jerk chicken and Italian sausages to shish kabob, hamburgers and Russian-style delights, provided by Hot Potato and Gourmanoff/Net Cost.

The participants reflected a multicultural population and all ages from toddlers to senior citizens. “It’s a labor of love and a needed break from the tension and hate stirring in today’s news,” said Singer.