If ever there was a reason to believe the vendors at the Red Hook ball fields will prevail in their battle against city, this is it. Senior Senator from New York, Charles Schumer, will visit the ball fields tomorrow to denounce the city's decision to open the fields to other bidders. He will be joined by various ethnic eats figures, including one Ed Levine (who is stepping away from the BBQ for this), and they will suggest, in the strongest terms possible, that current ball field vendors be given the right to vend in future seasons. As this week of weeks comes to a close, The Cutlets is pleased. Here's the full media advisory:
SCHUMER, LEADING NYC CHEFS: Pioneering Red hook vendors, iconS of brooklyn COMMUNITY, about TO be kicked out by CITY – CALLS ON PARKS DEPARTMENT TO SCRAP BID PLAN
Parks Dept. Forcing Citywide Favorite Food Stands to Re-Bid for Permits They’ve Held for Years, Could Raise Fees Exponentially and Lead to Their Elimination by Big Corporations
Locally Owned Vendors Serve Eclectic High-Quality, Affordable Cuisine that is a Symbol of Neighborhood Vitality and a Weekend Staple for Brooklyn and City Families
U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer will criticize a move by the Parks Department that could force food vendors operating at the ball fields in Red Hook out of business TOMORROW, Saturday, June 9 at 1:00pm in Red Hook. Every weekend, the vendors sell high-quality, affordable food, mostly Latin-style, at the ball fields and have become a much beloved weekend destination for families throughout Brooklyn and the entire city. However, the Parks Department informed the vendors that they would now have to competitively bid for permits they have held for years, which could result in an exponential increase in rates or the prospect of being out-bid by corporate conglomerates. Schumer said that these vendors are a Brooklyn treasures and are a symbol of the diverse cultural vitality of the community that should be preserved and supported, not subject to the City’s bottom line.
Schumer will be joined by Cesar Fuentes, President of the Food Vendors of Red Hook, Assemblyman Felix Ortiz, food historian Ed Levine and area chefs.
DATE: Saturday June 9, 2007
PLACE: Red Hook ball field #1; Corner of Bay St and Clinton St