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The Brooklyn Paper
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Brooklyn Heights resident Caroline Fernandes makes it a lot easier to find street fairs, festivals and arts and crafts shows in New York City with her "Vendor In$ider Listings" books. While the guide is obviously helpful for vendors with wares to sell, it’s also a boon for those who love a good street fair and the thrill of shopping al fresco.

Fernandes, who used to work as festival consultant for the West Side Chamber of Commerce (which produces the Amsterdam Avenue Festival in May and the Columbus Avenue Festival in September) in Manhattan, was barraged with so many questions about festivals that, seeing a need, she wrote the guidebook.

Fernandes says that street fairs are a great place, not only for bargains, but for budding entrepreneurs to start out.

"Unemployed people or struggling artists who are toying with the idea of starting their own business have the best testing ground available to them: a New York City street fair or festival might be the answer," says Fernandes. "Whether they have a new idea or product or service, only a street fair or festival can get you immediate results. New Yorkers don’t lie - they will let you know if they like something or not." She says she’s seen vendors grow their businesses from street fairs to retail, direct mail or wholesale businesses.

Fernandes’ book includes the how-tos of obtaining permits and more than 300 listings of events from April through December including attendance numbers and contact information.

To order "The Vendor In$ider Listings" ($25) call (718) 797-9606 or email vendorinsider@yahoo.com.

Updated 4:00 pm, November 10, 2010
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