Shop Local, Just Not Too Local

Screenshot from iShopBrooklyn.com

In an effort to bolster neighborhood economic centers across the borough, Borough President Marty Markowitz has launched Shop Brooklyn, a partnership with more than 190 Brooklyn businesses to offer back-to-school and other promotions.

The problem is, none of the businesses are in the Sheepshead Bay area, and only a smattering are in Southern or Eastern Brooklyn.

We found just five establishments in the seven area codes that cover Sheepshead Bay and nearby communities.

Of the five, three are in Coney Island. There are none in Sheepshead Bay, Gerritsen Beach, Brighton Beach, Manhattan Beach, Bensonhurst, Marine Park, Bath Beach, Mill Basin, Bergen Beach or Flatlands.

A list of the five nearby businesses is included at the end of this post.

“Of course, when we Shop Brooklyn, dollars circulate back into our vibrant Brooklyn neighborhoods, ensuring the health of our small businesses, keeping our retail streets brightly lit and active and providing the jobs so essential to our families and future,” said Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz.

So why is Sheepshead Bay and Southern Brooklyn denied the privileges Markowitz touts? Why are the majority of businesses connected with this initiative in Brooklyn Heights, Williamsburg, Park Slope and similar “yuppified” neighborhoods? Are these neighborhoods more important in the eyes of the Borough President’s office?

Or are our businesses to blame? Is it that we don’t have a business improvement district or a merchant’s association? That’s hard to argue, since Kings Highway, Nostrand Avenue and Brighton Beach have those organizations, and are also neglected. Is it cultural? Are Southern Brooklyn businesses less interested in offering discounts?

I doubt that. The owners I’ve talked to while running the site are eager for new and cost-effective ways to promote their businesses. I would guess that, if approached by the Beep’s office to be a part of this, they’d jump at the chance.

So is this just more of the same? More of Northern Brooklyn’s “elite” snubbing their noses down at our decidedly un-hip ‘hoods?

They can eat it.

Shop local. Shop in Sheepshead.

Check here for a complete list of Shop Brooklyn retailers. Here’s the list of (somewhat) local participating businesses:

Mitoushi Japense Restaurant
1221 Quentin Rd.
Brooklyn, NY 11229
Phone: 718-998-9882
Fax: 718-998-9885

Pasarela
1208 Kings Highway
Brooklyn, NY 11229
Phone: 718 336 7005
Fax: 718 336 8606

Coney Island Beach Shop
3018 Stillwell Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11224
Phone: 718-333-1110
Fax: 718-333-1177

Cosme Electronics
1726 Mermaid Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11224
Phone: 718-714-7064
Fax: 718-714-7064

Hair For U
1712 Mermaid Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11224
Phone: 718-714-7064
Fax: 718-714-7064

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