This is Josh Young. The rusted metal behind him shows how high the water reached at the front end of Gowanus Ballroom when Gowanus Canal flooded during Hurricane Sandy. He’s been running this remarkable 12,000 sq ft art gallery/performance space for close to 3 years and funding it mostly from his metal fabrication company, Serett Metal.
Josh took a big hit when the Sandy came to town as it’s going to cost in excess of $150,000 to replace the damaged tools and machinery. Because he was next to Gowanus Canal, his insurance company wanted to charge $18,000 a year for additional flood insurance. As he was still in the process of making the space financial he couldn’t justify the expense, so he wasn’t covered when the water surged up out of the canal.
It swept in across the car park and was held back for a while by the roller doors that he’d shuttered and barricaded. But in the end the weight of the water proved too much and it broke through the doors with such ferocity that huge wooden beams were tossed about like matchsticks.
The water reached five feet at the back end of the building and sat there efficiently corroding all of his equipment and machinery for over twenty-four hours. A large number of volunteers have helped clean out the space and equipment, but it’s going to take him quite a while to trade his way back to any kind of even keel.
But he is determined not to let this disaster sink the Gowanus Ballroom. And many of the people who he’s helped in the community feel the same way. So this coming Saturday there is a monster benefit being held at the Gowanus Ballroom and if you are in NYC, then you should definitely attend. And if you aren’t, then make a contribution via Paypal on the Gowanus Ballroom website.
Amongst a bunch of aerialists and fire performances by the phenomenal Flambeaux Fire, this is the schedule of performers for Saturday night at Gowanus Ballroom:
7:00pm – Sweet Soubrette
8:00pm – Big Volcano
9:00pm – ON
10:00pm – Shayfer James and Sara Zar
11:00pm – Will McEvoy
12:00am – Apocalypse Five and Dime
1:00am – Pendulum Swings
1:45am – Matthew Silver, the Great Performer
2:00am – Consumata
3:00am – Morgan O’Kane
Tell all your friends and come along to have a fantastic night which will help get Gowanus Ballroom back on its feet.
I’ve written about Gowanus Ballroom in here before – specifically when Amanda Palmer held the wrap party for her historic successful million dollar Kickstarter campaign and when the truly remarkable Flambeaux Fire did a show there.
As can be seen in this picture of the mezzanine level, even the paperwork was damaged in the storm and had to be laid out for several days to dry.
Josh is my oldest friend in NYC. We met when I first came here eight years ago and I’ve watched him build this amazing space into something valuable and worthwhile to a lot of people. He and Kristin are both good people doing good things. They need our help in whatever way we can give it. Come to the show on Saturday night and make a donation. It will appreciated and it will be used in a constructive way to rebuild this valuable resource for the community. I will be there wearing my top hat, so come and say hello.
The post Sandy pictures on this page are a selection from what I shot a week after the hurricane hit.