NAVY YARD — This spring Brooklyn Navy Yard will be a prime spot for anyone who loves whiskey, photography and futuristic plots.
The Yard is opening its doors to the public for a slew of quirky tours that allow visitors to taste moonshine and bourbon from the city's oldest distillery, get access to the yard's most photogenic sites and take part in an interactive production set in the year 2020.
The Whiskey Wars! tour explores the history of the Navy Yard's Marine crackdown on small whiskey distilleries in Vinegar Hill in 1869, which was later coined "Whiskey War of Brooklyn" as well as the irony that today Kings County Distillery is proudly making moonshine and bourbon inside the Yard's walls.
"This tour is a great marriage of historically relevant information and the resurgence of the industry today," said the director of BLDG 92 and organizer of the tours, Aileen Chumard. "Plus people are excited to get inside the Yard and see actual production."
During the tour, visitors explore the Marine headquarters where armed troops were dispatched into the surrounding neighborhoods before tasting spirits at Kings County Distillery at the former Paymaster Building, which was built in 1899.
The Seasonal Photography Tour will give visitors inside access the some of the site's most photogenic spots.
The tour covers the historic Navy Hospital Campus, the World War II-era pier and a functioning dry dock that is currently used for ship repair.
"The yard is a sprawling industrial landscape with buildings that pre-date the Civil War sitting next to cutting-edge development and design," Chumard said. "It is also situated next to the East River with the backdrop of the city that makes for incredible views and photography."
And for those that crave something a little more fantastical, the Yard's visiting artists are putting on a show that uses the walled complex as a stage. Private(i) transforms the space into the year 2020 when hyper-surveillance is the norm.
The show takes visitors to the Yard's most emptiest spaces to invoke a time when people still had secrets and privacy.
"Part of the allure to this is that people don't quite understand what it is," Chumard explained. "Basically people are let out into the Yard to have an adventure and come back transformed by what they have seen."
Whiskey Wars! takes place on May 18 from 4:15 to 5:45 p.m. and costs $15. Seasonal Photography tour starts on May 19 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and costs $30. Private(i) is set for April 26 and 27 at 2:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. and costs $20.
All tours start at BLDG 92 in the Brooklyn Navy Yard.
For more information, tckets, and a list of all the Yard's tours visit BLDG 92.