WRITTEN BY ALISON SKILTON
The 42nd annual Atlantic Antic festival filled Atlantic Avenue with music, food, vendors, and crowds of Brooklynites from all walks of life on Sunday, September 25.
The festival—which is the largest and oldest street fair in Brooklyn—stretched all the way from Flatbush Avenue to the waterfront. The festival brought together thousands of people from various cultural backgrounds to celebrate the diversity of our Brooklyn Heights community.
SFC is a sponsor of the event, which according to the festival’s presenters the Atlantic Avenue Local Development Corporation (AALDC), seeks “to further economic development, historic preservation, and cultural enrichment on Atlantic Avenue.”
Many of the event’s vendors and visitors told SFC Today that they make it a must to attend every year.
“We love Atlantic Antic. The culture, the people, the food, the music, it’s the best,” Angela Fletcher of Fletcher Design, a craft vendor at the fair, told SFC Today. “We travel all over the country, and this is just the best. We’ve been coming here for 13 years and we always get excited. And it’s home for us,” she continued, “We’re from Brooklyn, so there’s nothing better.”
Another craft vendor, Gerd Stoeckel, who runs manhattan-based clothing line “Bugged Out” alongside his wife Dina, also sung high praise for the festival. “It’s one of the biggest street fairs we do. It’s crazy busy, which is good because we do really well, but we’re always exhausted at the end of the day,” Stoeckel joked.
“It is one of the very few street fairs we sign up for long in advance,” he continued, “At other street fairs we usually wait for the weather report and then sign up a few days before; for Atlantic Antic we sign up months before.”
The event’s attendees seemed to be enjoying themselves as well. One such happy patron, Duncan, sat at an outdoor burger bar relaxing and having a beer with a friend. “I love Atlantic Antic. I’ve been in New York for about four years, and since I first found it, I’ve come back every year,” he told SFC Today.
“For me, it’s an opportunity to see so many different people coming together, and just enjoying this part of Brooklyn. This part of Brooklyn is very stratified,” he said, “I feel like [Atlantic Antic] really brings the community together. It’s kinda cool to see. There’s so much to do here, there’s so much to experience. I mean there’s a reason I’ve come back every year for four years.”
The AALDC also makes it a point to include community advocacy groups like local animal shelters, civil rights groups, and HIV testing centers into the mix of the event’s party atmosphere.
The festival is held around this time each year, and it is not to be missed for any enterprising Brooklyn resident.