A big ‘Gaines’ for Garden’s path

for The Brooklyn Paper
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Borough President Marko­witz has finally gone mad — Mad magazine, that is.

The Beep picked two beloved — and very different — sons of Brooklyn to be the latest honorees along the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s so-called “Celebrity Path.”

Late Mad magazine creator William “Bill” Gaines and legendary songwriter, Irving Burgie had their leaf-shaped plaque added to the path at a ceremony on Wednesday night — joining such famous Brooklynites as Woody Allen, Gregory Hines, and Barbra Streisand.

The inductees both embody the borough’s guts — but people who knew Gaines said the Homecrest native would’ve been amused by his elevation to the status of a Brooklyn “celebrity.”

“He would have been interested in what they were serving at the after-party,” joked Mad magazine’s current editor, John Ficarra.

“He would have been happy because it would have brought him [back] to Brooklyn and he could have stopped at Nathan’s for two hot dogs,” he said.

The year’s other honoree is best known for writing the music and lyrics to “Day-O,” as well as other songs on Harry Belafonte’s chart-topping album, “Calypso.”

Burgie, 84, grew-up in Prospect Heights and lived in Brooklyn until he went off to World War II. Though no longer a resident of the borough, Burgie said Brooklyn still beats in his blood.

“I’ve been a fan of Brooklyn all my life,” he said.

Gaines died in 1992, but Burgie was at the Wednesday event.

“I feel very proud to be selected,” he said.

Updated 4:29 pm, July 9, 2018
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