The ladies of MeanRed Productions are the resident directors of BKLYN Yard (formerly The Yard), an outdoor space on the Gowanus Canal that plays host to a myriad of delightful outdoor activities during the sunny season. Joseph Alexiou dropped by the space to visit as Jenny Gottstein, Jen Lyon and Katie Longmyer pranced around in bikinis covered up by blue jumpsuits—nobody was taking chances that close to the water.
What is this big cylinder station that you call an office? Is it a bomb casing?
Jen: No, it was an illegal oil transfer station—before it was the location of Issue Project Room. It’s owned by a writer who wanted the space to be for artists. He even planted the trees, which are supposed to suck the oil and pollution right out of the ground!!
What can we expect from the Yard this summer?
Jen: Well May 23 is our soft launch with an event called Parked!, which is going to be a lot of food trucks serving up great meals. There will be the Red Hook vendors as well as Pizzamoto and the Community Juice Truck.
Jenny: We’re also looking forward to Score!, which is a big free swap on May 30, the upcoming Gowanus Harvest and the Masked Festival, if it’s still happening.
Katie: We’re bringing back the weekly Sunday Best party, which is a fantastic dance party collaboration with three resident DJs—Justin Carter, Eamon Harkin and Doug Singer. The first two are the guys from New Release and they bring in fantastic guest DJs.
What have been some of the best activities you’ve organized in the past?
Jen: The Gowanus Harvest Fest was incredible, The Rub [DJs] doing Black Sabbath covers with Sabbra Cadabra and the Wurst BBQ for Sunday Best.
Jenny: Summerstage where we had Santigold and Diplo. We had a T-shirt gun—a machine that shot concert shirts into the audience.
How do you describe your job to laymen, or your grandparents?
Jenny: We’ve been honed as curators, for boutique events and anything involving using a space. We’re event planners and collaborators.
Katie: We work really well in bringing together different groups of people into a place and creating a great atmosphere for really having a good time.
Jen: We curate about 12 events a month; we’re the only booking people at Love; we do Thursdays at Santos Party House.
Considering all the evens you plan, what are you planning to do this summer that isn’t a part of MeanRed?
Katie: I look forward to the impromptu backyard barbecues.
Jen: I loved going to Café Habana Outpost in Fort Greene. Also the African Day Festival on Memorial Day is wonderful, and Added Value, the farm in
Jenny: The Rubalad parties are fantastic.