Trying to nail down a precise description of Flatbush is like trying to balance a drop of quicksilver on the head of a pin. Flatbush is constantly changing, evolving, and presenting itself in a whole new light. Case in point: in 2016 a panel of horticulturist compared 151 blocks from 25 neighborhoods. When all was said and done, they declared the Flatbush block of E. 25th Street, between Clarendon Road and Avenue D, the "greenest block in Brooklyn." Turns out, Flatbush is rich with residents who love to garden. On any given day one might stroll down a street to see neighbors trading plants, offering tips, or picking weeds from an elderly neighbor's garden. At that precise moment, just blocks away, a world-renowned performer like Ray Charles or Itzhak Perlman might be preparing to go onstage at the famous Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts.
Flatbush is all about contrasts. After all, any neighborhood that can nurture both Busta Rhymes and Ruth Bader Ginsburg has room for people of all interests and walks of life.
Ask someone what particular style of architecture the neighborhood is known for and they are likely to smile. Victorian style homes mingle with craftsman bungalows, brick townhouses, and low-rise apartment buildings. Like its people, Flatbush's architecture is eclectic.
So too are neighborhood restaurants. Look no further than Flatbush eateries for an idea of the cultural diversity that keeps this neighborhood running. There's MangoSeed on Flatbush Avenue for Caribbean, Soulkofa on Franklin Avenue for soul food, Mashallah Sweets and Restaurant on Coney Island Avenue for Indian, New Hong Cong House on Cartelyou Road for Chinese, and Taqueria Maria and Ricardo -- also on Cartelyou Road – for Mexican food.
While everyday residents go about life as usual in Flatbush, there's a quiet power at work, constantly producing programs that will benefit their beloved neighborhood. The Flatbush Development Corporation (FDC) identifies any areas in the neighborhood that need tended to and come up with an actionable plan for change. Whether the plan includes renovating a plaza or offering summer camps to area kids, it's a community effort. Much like the gardens on E. 25th Street.
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