There’s one place where your local, everyday do-gooders can find everything they need to help save the city, and it just so happens to be in Park Slope.
The Brooklyn Superhero Supply Co. offers your standard superhero fare. From capes, masks, vapor blasters and photon shooters the shop has everything your hero needs. But that’s not all. One seemingly normal wall of shelves swings back to reveal even more, the tutoring center of 826NYC; a non-profit organization that works with students ages 6-18 to help foster their writing skills.
“Each 826 chapter has a theme which relates to the city it's in,” said store manager Chris Molnar. “For Brooklyn, the obvious choice seemed to be superheroes, who are so closely associated with the city. Our particular angle is that we're a sort of Home Depot-slash-clubhouse for masked do-gooders, with paint cans full of ‘Speed of Light’ and ‘X-Ray Vision’ and stations where visitors can try out a cape or be devillainized.”
The center offers drop-in tutoring and numerous workshops while also hosting school groups for on-site workshops during school days. Field trips are offered for a class of 15-30 students at a time.
Kate Ackerman is a tutor who first volunteered at 826NYC for two years before coming on as a staff member. She has now been involved with the organization for nine years.
“My favorite part of my job is seeing students who have been coming here since we opened our doors ten years ago,” Ackerman said.
A one-stop shop for students to utilize their superhero skills and their writing skills, the center strives to put kids at ease as they work with adults in this creative environment.“The storefront is what sets us apart from other non-profits that might offer similar programming,” Molnar said. “It embodies the kind of imaginative thinking we want to foster in the students we serve, and attracts the young, vibrant donors, fundraisers, and volunteers that more staid non-profits struggle to find and foster.”