Wednesday, January 13, 2010

LaunchPad: A New Arts Space for Franklin Avenue

The former mSnap storefront on Franklin and Park is being reinvented as a community arts space called LaunchPad. They've set up a page to raise funds for an opening in Spring 2010 on Kickstarter, which you can access here (take a look at the video). If you like this idea as much as I do, you can become a sponsor and help bring this great idea to the Avenue.

More to come on their opening and plans, but for now, here's the intro from their Kickstarter page:

"Do you ever wish there were more places for grassroots social gatherings? Where people can meet to share random ideas, hard goods, fun services, delicious food, and hearty laughter? Yeah, us too! So we'd like to create one...

LaunchPad: A future homebase for creative minds and curious spirits; a mixed use community space in New York City where people can rally together, trigger ideas, launch projects, and have tons of fun.

LaunchPad will be a mix of the following and probably a few other things too:

  • Bartertown and marketplace: Trade and sell artwork, services, homemade treats, magic potions, unwanted Christmas gifts, whatever. Bring paintings, photos, haircutting skills, vegetables from your garden, furniture, brownies, anything and everything.

  • Performances: Live music, poetry slams, stand-up comedy, improv, burlesque, baton twirling...

  • Rotating art exhibits: Artwork on the walls, floor, and ceiling. Display, admire, trade, buy.

  • Socials: Potluck meals, book clubs, board games, discussion groups, parties...

  • Movie screenings: New ones and old ones, projected on the wall. Comfy couches and fresh popcorn!

  • Classes: Teach a class or take a class. Arts, crafts, yoga, music, French…

In addition to hosting and encouraging artists and art lovers, LaunchPad will also sponsor a variety of art projects.

The venue for LaunchPad is an 800 square foot Brooklyn storefront, with a 1000 square foot backyard. It's located on Franklin Avenue near Park Place in a beautiful, historic, quickly growing neighborhood; a few short blocks from the 2,3,4,5,C,E,S subways. The place has a glowing soul and huge ambitions. It's literally a blank canvas, just waiting to be transformed into a creative haven where people with similar (and diverse!) interests can hang out and inspire each other."


  1. Good stuff!!!! Thanks for the info. We'll post on NP as well.

  2. This sounds cool, but I was wondering if you knew how to contact the people starting this to ask some questions before giving money... Thank you!!

    - Liz

  3. @ Liz: Send me an email and I can forward you theirs. They're also in and out of the storefront, so you could pop in if you get the chance. Lily at Lily & Fig also knows one of the lead guys, and speaks highly of him.

  4. Thanks, Nick. I was searching around and found a link on their website to their facebook page. I sent a message through that and they messaged me back with questions. It sounds like a really great addition to the neighborhood, I just hope it lasts and isn't a great thing for 6 months and then a vacant storefront again. - Liz

  5. Hi Nick, Liz, All,

    I'm Mike, and this storefront is mine. mSnap was a company I used to work for, and we used my storefront space as an office for a while. I no longer work for that company, hence no more office there. I live in the neighborhood (right around the corner from the storefront) and also hate having my space sit empty. It's a waste of great space when it's empty, especially as the neighborhood grows and demand for more communal places increases. Over the past year, I offered the space out to a few different people for a few different projects, but none came to fruition. I've also been toying with the LaunchPad idea for the past year (amongst other ideas), but for a variety of reasons I haven't been able to dive in and make it happen. Many people have been supportive of the idea, but it hasn't been easy to find people who are able to dedicate the time and efforts to make it a reality. A friend recently agreed to assist me with the LaunchPad project, and so here we go!!! Like you, I'm also hopeful that we can sustain this project long term. I'm optimistic that it can/will happen. That success will depend not only on our efforts, but also on the participation of the community. LaunchPad is all about community. So I'll continue to encourage everyone to become part of LaunchPad, and in turn to become part of the success we're all hoping for. Sure, it's an optimistic and idealistic goal. And sure, there will be people who will doubt that it can be done. But I'm an optimistic and idealistic guy. And I've seen a lot stranger things happen in life. :-)

    Thanks to everyone for the attention and support, it is MUCH appreciated. All questions/criticism/etc are welcomed, so please feel free to contact me with any feedback whatsoever.


    (alwayslookaround at gmail dot com)

  6. Totally cool idea. I have to say though, I live around the corner and if you look in the window you will see a brown male torso. I was parking my car last week and saw this same item on the street with other garbage. An hour later I walked pass launchpad on my way to the subway and saw it in the window! Too funny and another example of "one man's trash is another man's treasure".


  7. Yup, I saw that torso on the street and grabbed it right away. It's now part of the LaunchPad supplies/materials collection. It's got great potential to become part of someone's future art project, don't you think?! :-)

    Personally speaking, I'm definitely a lover of things that most people call junk. I find a lot of great stuff on the street. But I suppose "great" is very relative...

  8. The LaunchPad seems like an amazing space and a fabulous idea. How do I connect with someone about setting up events or classes there?


  9. Hi Marcy,

    If you're interested in setting-up events or classes at LaunchPad, just let us know what you have in mind. You can come in to talk, call, or send an e-mail. Address, contact info, and other info can be found on our website:

    Many thanks, hope to see you around LaunchPad soon.