Southern Brooklyn

Sheepshead Bay Vs. Williamsburg In Tree Bed Contest That’s More Important Than Olympics

Chernova's (winning) tree bed

Forget the London Olympics, Sheepshead Bay is in the midst of its very own turf war.  The race to win 1 Million Trees’ “My Tree NYC: Beautiful Tree Bed Contest” pits local hero Julia Chernova versus Rob Hickman, from some place called “South Williamsburg” (is that a thing now?).

The contest ends August 3, with the winner taking home a Home Depot gift card ($100 for the grand prize), an official NYC Parks tree bed plaque displaying the category in which they won, recognition at a ceremony in Central Park and true neighborhood glory.

While there are several more contestants than just Hickman and Chernova, throughout the duration of the contest it’s been neck and neck for the two competitors. And Hickman has been sending out play-by-plays announcing the dramatic twists… and sparking a green-thumb war by saying it’s a battle of “South Williamsburg versus Sheepshead Bay.”

As of now, Chernova is in first place with 149 votes and Hickman is at 136.

If you’re not sure about Chernova’s qualifications, with the help of community members, she beautified her block – East 14th Street,  between Avenue X and Gravesend Neck Road – and, more recently, Gravesend Neck Road itself, by adding several over-sized flower pots growing shrubs and colorful flowers.

Her contest entry tree bed features two hand-painted signs in it. The signs were decorated by local kids who wanted to remind passers-by that they care about Earth and their block.

The tree bed showcases marigolds and green leafy plants, all planted by kids from around the way. Chernova and her green-thumbed youth went a few steps further by putting up a dispenser with  bags for dog poop, a self-designed tree guard that guides rainwater into the tree soil, and two solar-powered lights.

Clearly, there’s no contest. Chernova from Sheepshead Bay wins by about 12 miles.

Now, go vote and make your voice heard! You can vote once a day, so be sure to return back every day between now and August 3 so we can show Williamsburg who’s boss.

Comment policy


  1. You didn’t mention the other guy’s contest submission yet you declare that “clearly, there’s no contest.” Way to promote unbiased journalism bro.

  2. at least 3 tress have COME DOWN in the past few years on E 9 St betw U & V, so that’s lots of points off right there.  so net # of new plantings cannot exceed 999,997.

  3. I do wish that contests would limit voting to just once. They shouldn’t be a test of endurance for those who believe that someone should win.

  4. And I wish that contests wouldn’t limit voting to Facebook. I was totally going to vote for Julia but nope, need a Facebook account. Couldn’t make the contest on of those create-your-own-poll sites? Everything has to center around Facebook on the internet now :/

  5. Lisanne, of course it’s no longer about which tree you really like more, it’s more about who has better FB friends and Sheepshead Bites on your side. But all for a good cause. :)))

  6. AGREED!

    (It should all center around Sheepshead Bites)

    But, really, people do not realize the power they have given Facebook over their lives and, often, their businesses. 

  7. I worry we’re all going to burn out from the constant stimuli we receive to give websites traffic.  These once a day voting scenarios bring their numbers up, and even not-for-profit want increased visibility. Then there are the plethora of petitions. And so many other things, much of them commendable. There are days I want to turn the computer off, but I don’t because I fear that something important will require my attention, as if I shall make the difference of one that will make all the difference.


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