Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Red Hook Ballfield Vendors Victory: the Day After

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No matter how you cut it, the survival of the Red Hook Ball Field vendors with a six-year permit is a victory. A beloved local institution has been saved, after a long struggle, and it is national news. The AP story on the permit has been picked up and is running in more than 60 papers and news outlets around the country and internationally today. The fate of the Red Hook vendors is interesting, it turns out, as far away as London, Tucson, New Orleans and San Francisco. Ultimately, there were no other bids for the permit to operate in the park. We are cheered, and we are happy for Vendor's Committee director Cesar Fuentes and all the vendors. Now that that is settled, it's time to ask how the city's push for standardization and expensive equipment is going to change the scene at the ballfields. Yesterday, Mr. Fuentes said that some of the "mercado" feeling will be lost. Overnight he sent out an email thanking thanking everyone that had been supportive of the vendors' effort to stay in the park, but noted, "It is important to understand that while this is a tremendous victory for us, we are still facing tremendous challenges ahead before we can consider an official opening date this summer. These challenges affect every vendor as he\she needs to be in full compliance with DOHMH standards & be able to afford costly equipment in order to operate legally." Each vendor needs to purchase equipment estimated to cost $15,000 to $30,000, and two dropped out early on because of the costs involved.

Red Hook Vendor Coverage:

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4 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

So the truth of the story is that after trying to drive them out, the city had no other bids?

Hmm.

10:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

1) Board of Health Rules must be enforced. That means lots of ice.
2) Same with the rules of ICE.
Immigration & Customs Enforcement.
Keep it all on the up-and-up and we'll all see good soccer and eat well.

12:06 PM  
Blogger The Phantom said...

I'm happy about this result, though I've never been to any of these vendors. Sometime soon, I'll try some of their food. Good luck, guys.

10:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope they can get small loans for the big ticket upgrading. Maybe a sponser a vendor drive is needed.

5:37 PM  

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