The Hester Street Fair kicked off its ninth outdoor season on Saturday, with more than 20 food and crafty vendors setting up in the usual Seward Park spot under glorious, about-goddamn-time springtime skies. The scene, as always, was plenty festive but also pleasantly low key, because unlike Smorgasburg, which is great for different reasons, Hester Street never really gets uncomfortably mobbed. Even after all these years, this remains very much a neighborhood hang.
hester street fair
Dreading the crush at the Union Square Holiday Market? These indie alternatives will be right up your alley/down your chimney.
Morbid Anatomy Holiday Flea Market
Sunday, December 11 at The Bell House, 12-6 pm
What says “Happy Holidays” better than gifts of taxidermy, osteology, and diaphonized specimens? The Morbid Anatomy Holiday Market will feature vendors with the best vintage and one-of-a-kind gifts for that Wednesday Addams on your list. This time around, there’ll be medicinal curiosities from Ryan Matthew Cohn, odd antiques from Evan Michelson, Mexican folk art and vintage jewelry from Daisy Tainton, natural history specimens from Wilder Duncan, handcrafted printed goods and wet specimens from Mark Moritat Splatter, ceramics and vintage books from Elizabeth New, diaphonized specimens from Adam Hutter, and more.
The Hester Street Fair folded up its tents last month, but this weekend it’ll pop back up near the South Street Seaport– with bells on! The folks behind the seasonal bazaar are opening their holiday market on Black Friday. Trust us, it’ll be way better than macing someone for a Nintendo Classic.
Here’s a rundown of what’ll be on offer, directly from the organizers.
Halloween weekend is upon us, boo. The good news: There are a slew of parties on the horizon. The bad news: After this weekend the city freezes over and Santacon (ugh, Santacon in Williamsburg?) is what passes for outdoor activity. But don’t fret: The city’s biggest outdoor markets are busting out the folding tables and beer kegs one last time this weekend. Hit ’em up before they hibernate.
In this age of liquid-nitrogen ice cream, rolled ice cream, and churro cones, you may think that where everyone’s favorite frozen treat is concerned, there’s nothing new under the sun. But don’t cry into your Kanye cone just yet. We’ve got the inside scoop (har) on two ice cream cone-ucopias that promise to be sweet as hell.
National Ice Cream Day Bonanza at Brooklyn Flea
Saturday, July 16, 10am-5pm at 176 Lafayette Ave. in Fort Greene; Sunday, July 17, 10am-5pm, at Manhattan Bridge Archway Plaza in Dumbo.
Seven vendors will be whipping up special flavors for the Flea’s annual two-day ice cream blowout. If you’ve been too lazy to get out to Rockaway to try the P&B donut ice-cream sandwich at Citysticks, then head over to either Fort Greene (Saturday) or Dumbo (Sunday) to try the donut ice-cream sundae that Underwest Donuts has created using a custom flavor from Lower East Side favorite Il Laboratorio del Gelato. Good Batch will be serving up a birthday-cake ice-cream sandwich for lovers of rainbow cuisine, Blue Marble is apparently going cookie-crazy, and a new vendor, Malai, will be offering up Indian ice-cream floats and sundaes. The Flea’s usual array of vendors will be out in full force, so don’t drip anything on that mid-century lounger.
You’re no doubt already counting down the hours till Independence Day weekend, with its blessed promise of a booze-soaked Monday (and Friday, and Saturday, and Sunday…). But don’t waste your precious free day standing in a massive, sweaty crowd all afternoon just to have any hope of glimpsing some fireworks thwarted when some NBA reject stand right in front of you at the last minute. Instead, spend it drinking, partying, and stuffing your face with grilled meats (or grilled meat substitutes), at one of these parties– no screaming toddlers included. Fireworks are overrated, anyway.
Sure, Smorgasburg used to satiate your eccentric food cravings, but, like everything else in this city, popularity got the best of it and now it’s a crowded, sweaty mess, populated with frat boys, tourists and out-of-town parents scrambling for the last bite of $12 truffled ramen burrito and fighting for a table in the shade. If you’re looking for a chiller place to sample an array of drinks and creative new eats while hanging outside with your besties, maybe one of these summer food fests will do the trick. Just don’t bogart the okinomiyaki on a stick.
So many good things are coming back in April: tonight there’s Louie, Sunday there’s Silicon Valley and — oh yeah, IRL — there’s the Hester Street Fair. The outdoor food-and-fashion bonanza returns to the corner of Hester and Essex Streets on April 25 and they’ve given us the early word on new vendors. This year the fair will be Saturdays only, but to make up for the loss of Sundays they’re promising “a rotation of almost all new food vendors with more spots added to create a Hester Food Court.” Oh, and there’ll be TBA nighttime events, too.
When we last spoke to Dan Perino about his East Village fliering blitz, he told us he still hadn’t found “the one.” So we decided to help him out* by inviting him down to our Bedford + Bowery Bazaar for a few rounds of speed dating. We gave attendees a chance to get to know the one and only “Looking for a Girlfriend” guy — and lo and behold, some of them jumped on it. In fact, one potential paramour even made plans for a second date (alas, she later canceled). Watch our video to see how it went — and look for the guy from Holland Helado butting into one of Perino’s tête-à-têtes to worship at his altar.
While so many New Yorkers succumb to the insidious “normcore” and “athleisure” trends, others are determined to stay fresh — and not just the drag queens. With Fashion Week coming up, it’s once again time to focus on the fabulous. Luckily, you don’t have to trek up to midtown (or wherever the shows are this year) to do so, since there are plenty of fashionable festivities in our hoods.