14th Annual Harvest Fest at Narrows Botanical Garden in Bay Ridge

Dressed-up dogs and busy bees at Bay Ridge park

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Dynamic doggie duo: Pups Max and Leo came as Batman and Robin.
Pump-kid: Brice Zwerling, 16 months, clutches one of the many gourds on display.
Water dog: Jennifer Sedita and her chihuahua Maya dressed as the Little Mermaid and Sebastian the crab for the competition.
Like it hot: Noelle Bruno dressed her dog Tulip up as Marilyn Monroe.

Dogs and pumpkins and bees, oh my!

Several hundred Ridgites — and their furry friends — headed on down to a good, ol’ fashioned fall harvest festival on Oct. 13.

The Narrows Botanical Garden — a volunteer curated and cultivated oasis of rare plants in Shore Road Park — hosted its 14th annual Harvest Fest, featuring the beloved canine-costume contest.

Ridgites brought their top dogs to the event in outfits ranging from Batman and Robin to Roger Rabbit — with many owners coming in coordinated costumes themselves. Top honors went to a Labradoodle shaved to look like a lion, whose owner dressed her two young boys as circus ringmasters.

“People really get into it. It’s always been the biggest highlight,” said Botanical Gardens President Richie Haugland.

The festival also featured a special presentation on the organic, natural honey produced in the garden’s six beehives. Kids got to watch the busy bees in action through an observation window and hear a presentation on the pesticide-induced plight of the winged workers.

“It makes people aware of not only that honey’s good for you, but what happens when you, say, spray your yard,” said Haugland, noting that the sweet stuff made at the garden comes from the nectar of its unique flowering plants. “You’re eating locally pollinated and locally harvested honey.”

Young ’uns also got to decorate some 400 pumpkins in paint and glitter for Halloween.

“We’ve got a lot of budding artists here,” said Haugland.

Haugland said the event would have been impossible without the help of Third Avenue pet-supply shop Paws Truly in coordinating the costume contest, and the donated pumpkins from 65th Street produce depot Three Guys from Brooklyn

“It’s becoming not just a Narrows Botanical thing — it’s a community thing now, which is great,” Haugland said.

Reach reporter Will Bredderman at or by calling (718) 260-4507. Follow him at
Updated 10:15 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

John Wasserman from Windsor Terrace says:
I know this won't be a popular question among plant lovers, but I must ask this: Isn't the term "botanical garden" a redundant one? Don't both words for all intents and purposes mean pretty much the same thing? I'm sorry if I've offended anyone on this board.
Oct. 16, 2013, 4:57 pm
Ed from Bay Ridge says:
It's a botanical garden as opposed to a rock garden, beer garden or Madison Square Garden.
Oct. 16, 2013, 6:21 pm
Darren from Bay Ridge says:
Is this the same garden where the crazy bee keeper guy sits by the gate like he owns the place? I think the guy was once screaming at some kids for tossing a ball around in there...he seems a little full of himself - just sayin... Peace out!
Oct. 16, 2013, 6:34 pm
John Wasserman from Windsor Terrace says:
Thank you Ed, for the information and for answering my question. Perhaps we could meet at the Alcohol Bar and discuss this matter further (not the Sand Bar)? Thank you for reading.
Oct. 16, 2013, 10:10 pm
Kenny Nightfalls from bay ridge says:
Re: Darren, you are correct. That's the flower park where the guy who was in a madhouse now directs volunteers around...
Oct. 23, 2013, 7:50 pm

Comments closed.

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