Greenpoint Terminal Market, the outdoor flea market that opened on the Greenpoint waterfront last summer, returns this weekend with around 100 vendors as well as live music, food, and ample room – over four acres — for visitors to safely walk, shop, and enjoy the warm weather. Even more so, however, it’s a chance for vendors from both Brooklyn and the tri-state area to gain back some of the income and opportunities they’d lost over the past year.
“We started in the middle of the pandemic, like literally in the very midst of it,” said market manager Lana Surzhikova. “We saw how small businesses [were] dying.”
For businesses without a brick and mortar location especially, markets like Greenpoint Terminal Market are one of the only opportunities to sell their products and to build a customer base.
“On my Instagram page, I can show little bits and pieces of what I have,” said Nat Krieger, who sells vintage and near-vintage pieces out of his store, Theobucket Vintage, on the side of his full-time job. “But I kid you not, if you come see me at my table, the vintage ads – I’ll have a thousand vintage ads on the table. I’ll have 400 rings. I’ll have 300 brooches. It has to be seen.”
Krieger, who drives in from his home in Nassau County, is a market veteran who started selling his own collection of vintage items purchased from auctions, which he frequents with his wife. In his experience, he said, new markets are notoriously disorganized. Not so with Greenpoint.
“They’re organized, they know what they want to do – they have a vision,” said Krieger.
Queens-based vendor Katrina Gregory, who sells her own reworked pieces (purchased clothes that have been redesigned or altered) and other vintage pieces through her brand New York’s Closet, has relied solely on the brand for her income since she got laid off from her job as an e-commerce manager during the pandemic. Like Krieger, she doesn’t have a brick and mortar space, and struggled to build a customer base solely through her Instagram page – especially since she was new, and people couldn’t see the clothes in person.
“Just being at Greenpoint, having that base – people saw me, saw my brand, saw my Instagram, and were just like, ‘you’re amazing, your energy’s great, I love your clothes, I love what you’re doing,” she said. “And just meeting people every weekend was just awesome.”
Since she started at Greenpoint last year, she’s gained over a thousand Instagram followers. Many of the people she met became repeat customers.
“I’m always running out of business cards,” said Gregory.
She sells her pieces at other markets across the city, she said, but Greenpoint has provided more than just a ten-by-ten-foot vendor space.
“Every single day, they promoted the vendors there,” she said. The events helped bring even more people in, she felt.
“People want not so much just a space where you can just shop and go,” said Surzhikova. “They have shopping malls for that.”
Last year in particular featured acts from comedians like Rosebud Baker, as well as activities like a disco pop up by Ridgewood’s The Roller Wave. This year, said Surzhikova, programming will be even more robust: opening day will kick off with music by DJ Tommy T, a lineup of comedians from New York Comedy Club, and performances by local musical groups like the Flowmingos. DJ Price I$ Right will spin on a semi-regular basis.
Over the course of the season, visitors can take part in workshops for yoga and capoeira, watch a dog fashion show, and order food and drinks from over twenty different local eateries, like C-Bao, Cento Percento, and Vodega. Many activities will be kid-friendly, and all of it will be underscored by views of the Manhattan skyline and the East River.
Greenpoint Terminal Market will be located at 2 Noble Street in Greenpoint, near West Street, and is a short walk from the Greenpoint Avenue G station. The market takes place every Saturday and Sunday from 10 am to 5 pm starting this Sunday, May 2nd, and the outdoor season will run until October when they’ll move indoors. Masks are required to enter.