Today, June 30th marks the 25th Anniversary of the Spike Lee classic Do the Right Thing, and to commemorate this occasion, Lee threw a huge block party on Saturday on Stuyvesant Avenue (between Lexington and Quincy), the same Brooklyn block where the movie was shot all those years ago.
Now, I may not remember the film too well, but I do know that I watched it a few years ago. Despite my memory of the film not being the best, I still couldn’t pass up the opportunity to check out this event, and with my best friend and nephew in tow, we headed to the infamous Bed-Stuy.
I’ve grown up in Brooklyn, but rarely ever visited Bed-Stuy, but when we arrived, I noticed just how beautiful it is! It is quiet, well-maintained, and the historic architecture is gorgeous. I do know that this neighborhood was and is still known for many things other than this, but if one were to push aside those preconceived notions, they would see a place full of art, culture, and history.
When we arrived to the block party, the music was booming, the crowd was dancing, and the sun was shining with all of its strength. We quickly made our way to the front where the stage was set up and began grooving to the old school hip hop that the DJs were blasting. My nephew, who really loves this kind of music, was having such a great time.
I knew that special guest appearances were scheduled, but I had no idea who they would be, and to my surprise, both Wesley Snipes, whom Spike Lee has worked with on multiple occasions, and Dave Chappelle made their way to the stage! That was most definitely the highlight of the day.
Do the Right Thing takes place on one of the hottest days of the summer, and it definitely felt as though Saturday were the same…But based on the plot of the film, thank goodness that is where the similarities ended. We were having a great time, but could only stand the heat and sweat (oftentimes not only our own :gag:) for about two hours before we decided to exit the crowd. Other guest appearances that we ended up missing included Mos Def, Erykah Badu, and Chuck D.
There was a merchandise booth selling Do the Right Thing t-shirts, but I was a bit astounded when I found out that they were being sold for $40 a piece! For someone, like Lee, who is all about advocating for the common man, it seemed hypocritical and just plain wrong to sell these t-shirts in a price range so out of the reach of many.
Despite the heat, it was an overall fun day within a part of Brooklyn that I’ve rarely ventured to, and I’m happy to have had the opportunity to experience it with my nephew. He just graduated the day before and I am beyond proud of how far he’s come. I know without a doubt that he’s going to go far in whatever he chooses as his life’s path and I’ll be there to support him every step of the way.