Archive for the ‘Hell’s Kitchen’ category

Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market 2008

August 1, 2008

Every six months to a year, I seem to end up wandering around the Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market. As flea markets go, I gotta give it a 10 out of 10. Lots of old stuff. And really old stuff. And odd stuff…yeah, odd stuff.

And always in the presence of a familiar figure…

It’s located off 9th Avenue somewhere around 38th Street or so. It happens every weekend and its free admission. The most amazing thing about it is how long it is and how little it is populated. There are a ton of weekly street fairs and they are jam packed for blocks and blocks; but the HK flea market is very select in who it lets in to sell…apparently.

And the amusing part of it how downmarket the neighborhood is. It’s close to the bus terminal and sometimes it seems you have to run through an iffy area to get there. But for bargain hunters of old merchandise, it seems to fit the bill.

But notice how much open area there is. And the crowd was sparse. I was there mid-afternoon on a Saturday and the crowds were light. There’s lots of stuff for sale, but there’s one thing I never saw a single trace of. Not a one! The item? Anything new.

There’s old clothes, furniture, books, records, videotapes, jewelry, knickknacks. Just everything.

Think about it. You’re in New York and you need a good animal skull. Where are you going to go?

The problem with my little scenario…this is just one of two places I know where to buy a good skull. That’s NYC for you.

-H

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Stiles Farmers Market

October 24, 2007

This farmers market is a little different than most of the ones I mention in my wanderings.

I’d seen it before, even walked through it once long ago when I first wandered Hell’s Kitchen.  Stiles is located at the corner of 41st Street and 9th Avenue.

It’s not like they typical market:  it’s semi-permanent.

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Yeah, it’s  pretty much just a tent.  A nice tent.  But it is a tent.

When I wandered in the other day, I was struck by the quality of the produce and the low price.

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In fact, it struck me more as a grocery store than a tent. But it is a tent.

I generally don’t like the quality of produce in NYC.  You have to pay some pretty good money for marginal stuff from a small selection.  To find a good selection, and it can be found, you have to do a lot of hunting and pay for it.  Here was stuff and selection that was pretty good (although not up to suburban grocery standards like my favorite, Publix).  I gathered up a bunch and escaped for way less than $10.  That’s astonishing for me.

I’m heading back soon.

-H

Ankling to the Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market

October 21, 2007

Or, if you prefer, the Clinton Flea Market.  Hah!  No one ‘cept realtors calls it “Clinton” (named after New York’s first governor and not its current junior senator).

The official name:

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The flea market is pretty famous, at least locally.  I’ve been there about three times and I’d have to say it has gotten smaller each time.  Saturday’s displays filled only a fraction of the road blocked off for it (at the corner of 9th Avenue and 39th Street, going to 10th Avenue). 

However, the most wonderful thing about it is that it is a true flea market.  You want dishes, glasses, silverware, watches, furniture, records, cds, DVDs…whatever?  They got it.

This guy is not for sale (but I guess you could make an offer).

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The displays were pretty spread out, but there was a central area that was chock-a-block with stuff.

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I have to admit that I was startled by one item.  A “secretary”.

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“Startled” only begins my emotions on it.  I inherited a near exact version from my grandmother.  It sits in my little Manhattan co-op even as I type away.

But the flea market version is in better condition.  And it has a real lock, and it has little supports that pivot out to support the desk top when it swings out, and it has FOUR drawers (mine has three).  Mostly, it seems too….inexpensive.  Not that I would ever sell mine (family would kill me if I did), but $295 seems awfully little for something I treasure so much.  Who knows how much I could have knocked the price down to?

-H