How to activate Brisbane city on a Sunday? That’s part of the inspiration behind a series of block parties put on by Red Hook, running during Sundays this December.

The first happened on the weekend, the original idea coming from a November Sunday birthday celebration at Red Hook for co-owner Bonnie Shearston -- a freewheeling affair at the inner-city American-style eatery involving an intimate crowd and turntables on the bar. With The Gresham already open seven days a week next door, Shearston and co-owner Tom Sanceau reckon one of the commercial end of town’s best two-handers can draw a significant crowd on a Sunday.

“We’d love to get the laneway thing going around there and try to activate that space a bit more,” Sanceau says. “On Sundays, we see these really cool laneways that aren’t in use. We thought, how cool would it be if you just heard a sound emanating from between these concrete towers and followed that noise?”

With both Red Hook and The Gresham open, the block parties add to a spine of venues that operate throughout the weekend running from Sonny’s House of Blues on Rowes Lane to Brooklyn Standard on Eagle Lane.

“It’s just about giving people options,” Sanceau says.

The parties are free, feature specials drawn from Red Hook’s menu of New York street food, with DJs spinning upbeat hip-hop. The remaining two events take over Gresham Lane on Sunday December 11 and 18 from 3pm–9pm.

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