BK food pantry butts heads with city over fundraiser
A Bensonhurst food pantry that's coping with a funding crisis says it's trying to open a flea market to bring in some new cash, but the city is denying that request. Reaching Out Community Services serves some 4,000 families every year, and its workers say now is the busiest season. To raise money, pantry founder Tom Neve says he's been trying to set up a weekend holiday flea market at Cadman Plaza in Downtown Brooklyn. He says he'd like to charge vendors to sell their goods and notes that he's successfully operated a similar market there before. Neve says that now, however, he's facing opposition from the city's Department of Parks and Recreation. He says officials have offered to let him set up in several Manhattan parks, but Neve says he wants to hold the flea market in Brooklyn. In a statement, the parks department says it offered the pantry one weekend for the flea market instead of a longer period, so that the venue could be available for other events.