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July 20, 2009 / Brooklyn news / Park Slope / Meadows of Shame

Holy crap! Prospect Park was even worse THIS weekend!

The Brooklyn Paper
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Just two weeks after an Independence Day weekend garbage debacle in Prospect Park, the Long Meadow was left for dead on Sunday after a huge — and apparently illegal — gathering.

Park lovers flooded our Inbox with pictures and filled our voicemail with concerned calls this morning after finding the Long Meadow positively unusable.

“A group called MIH Ventures had its ninth annual ‘Heatwave’ barbecue and left the place an appalling mess,” wrote one tipster. “It looked like no one did anything to clean up. By 9 am, the Parks Department had not even come.”

Another park user called to complain.

“I’m appalled,” said this caller, who requested anonymity because she is a park volunteer. “I’ve never see it like this. It was a blanket of trash. This was some serious irresponsibility, not your usual weekend of picnic.”

A spokesman for the Prospect Park Alliance said that the organizers of the “Heatwave” event did not have a permit for such a large gathering, making it impossible for Prospect Park officials to know that such a big event was happening.

“It’s enough work just to clean up after all the permitted events!” said the spokesman, Eugene Patron.

City rules require a permit for any event that is expected to draw more than 25 people, he said.

“But in this case, there were hundreds,” Patron said. “There are pictures on Twitter!”

Though Patron said that city officials and Parks workers did not know about the event in advance, plenty of people did. MIH Ventures sent out an electronic invitation via Evite days earlier and promised a party that would be “the outdoor event of the summer.”

“For eight years straight, MIH Ventures has hosted the premiere event of the summer, as we bring together patrons, clients, associates, friends and family for a day in the park,” this year’s invitation read. “Last year, we had over 1,000 people bless us with their presence and as we continue to grow, so does the size of the event. This year we expect nothing but more beautiful faces, food, and fun.

“We’re taking over Prospect Park...are you with us!?!” it added.

Readers have been especially keyed in to the sorry state of Prospect Park this summer after a series of stories in The Brooklyn Paper have alerted the public to the ongoing trash problem.

MIH Ventures did not return a call and an e-mail message before The Brooklyn Paper’s squeaky clean online deadline.

Updated 5:13 pm, July 9, 2018: Story was updated to include details from the now-legendary Evite invitation.
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Reasonable discourse

Bob I from Park Slope says:
Here's a quote lifted from the promotion MIH Ventures sent out. See www.fidobrooklyn.org for the full promo.

-----------

"This is that event that you will hear about all year and you don't want to miss...
TRUST US ON THIS ONE. We're taking over Prospect Park...are you with us!?!"

------------

Let's take them at their word and not let this die. Oh, the event was sponsored by Pepsi!
July 20, 2009, 3:39 pm
Darius from Crown Heights says:
http://theminorityreportnyc.blogspot.com/2008/07/why-you-all-in-my-grill-brooklyns.html
July 20, 2009, 3:52 pm
Kimberly S from Park Slope says:
It's time for metal dumpsters in Prospect Park! What's more unsightly-- a few green dumpsters or acres of land that look more like a landfill than a park?
July 20, 2009, 4 pm
irate resident from prospect heights says:
sad to see this allowed to happen! do u think the city would allow such event to happen in central park? no way! why is it allowed in prospect park then? it's a shame and an embarrassment to see this happen. it is obvious that cops/police are always around the park on the weekends, why didn't they do something to stop this group from destroying the neighborhood's most important asset? that group (MIH Ventures) should be fined and banned from the park! in fact we need to ban any sort of grilling/picnic'ing in the park period! or at least make a designated area for them, not in the middle of the lawn that's for sure.
July 20, 2009, 4:17 pm
Rocky from South Brooklyn says:
Sorry, folks, you won't get anywhere with this one.
Unless you want the Rev. Al in your grill.
July 20, 2009, 4:24 pm
al pankin from downtown says:
fire the parks adminisrator and replace her with someone who knows how to keep things in order and clean. enough talk already.
July 20, 2009, 4:33 pm
Publius from Bklyn Heights says:
Holy Crap? That's a headline for a newspaper that is trying to be a legitimate publication? Who's your headline editor? Or are you in a race to the lowest denominator with your sister publication, the NY Post?
July 20, 2009, 4:43 pm
irate resident from prospect heights says:
i agree not a "legitimate publication" like title...but the message is clear that something needs to be done. the park cannot be left in shambles every weekend and that type of activity needs to be controlled/prohibited asap!!!
July 20, 2009, 4:48 pm
PSW from Harlem says:
I was at the event...it started off nicely but became very "hood" very quick! But more often then not, the promoters stopped the music and continuously reminded the event gather "to pick up your trash" and "treat this place like it's your home". I believe that the promoters realized that the crowd was enormous. I overheard one of them say,"next time a secret location"
July 20, 2009, 5:58 pm
Brooklyn Visitor from Bronx says:
I was also at the event and heard the announcements to "clean up your trash" and "treat this park like home".
July 20, 2009, 6:10 pm
Kady from Clinton Hill says:
This is one of the many events of the young upscale urban community in Brooklyn each year. Due to its growing popularity, those with less than stellar intentions have begun to frequent it, just like the recent debacles at Habana Outpost and similar venues.

As a lifelong Brooklyn resident - I grew up on PPSW and in the Park - I also know this is not only the fault of the crowd, but the Park administration who have been consistently lax in their duties this summer.

That said, next year a new venue or proper paperwork should be in order.
July 20, 2009, 6:19 pm
C.G. from LES says:
To irate resident from prospect heights, how can you blame a small group for the actions of the many people who attended the park that day, most of whom are from Brooklyn? You can't be serious?! You make it seem like Brooklynites don't leave that park in shambles all the time.

I have an issue with people not cleaning up after themselves but come on, if the people who attended this function were 20 shades lighter, this would have flown right under the radar.
July 20, 2009, 6:30 pm
Kristyn from Park Slope says:
It is irresponsible, naive, and frankly pathetic to say that the disgusting mass of trash left behind by the MIH Ventures crowd was not the fault of MIH Ventures and the revelers they invited. The parks service and our tax dollars should in no way be responsible for cleaning up after MIH Ventures' illegal party in Prospect Park. The promotors plea to, "clean up your trash" and "treat this park like home" displays their complete lack of foresight and planning and frankly their negligence. I saw the park this morning and if that's the way the MIH ventures' guests treat their homes then no wonder they had to have their illegal party in the park.

The park has designated areas for BBQs. The sea of trash that stretched down the entire Long Meadow was not near these designated areas. Also, the park requires a permit for events expected to attract over 25 people. From the looks of the promotors Twitter feed, Evite, and posted pictures they invited hundreds and hundreds attended. MIH Ventures knew exactly what they were doing and can in no way plead ignorance or a take over by uninvited guests. They had alcohol and a live DJ along with the food and drinks they were serving, so obviously they planned ahead for the crowds.

There is an issue with the number of garbage cans for the usual weekend BBQ crowd, but the size of this event and the fact that it clearly was done without a permit and encouraged/condoned alcohol and glass bottles (also not allowed in the park) makes this an entirely separate issue.

The promoters should not only be fined, and charged with all the violations that they racked up, but they should also be forced (either through legal channels or by public opinion) to help clean up the vodka bottles, plastic plates, cups, forks, napkins, rib bones and soda cans and bottles that are still blanketing the meadow. MIH Ventures' clients should also see the pictures of this disgraceful mess and be left to decide if that's who they want promoting them.

July 20, 2009, 6:45 pm
Brooklyn Visitor from Bronx says:
Kristyn, you are not stating FACTS! The group DID NOT provide alcohol to anyone and did not provide beverages in glass bottles. You were not present so speak what you know.
July 20, 2009, 6:59 pm
Kristyn from Park Slope says:
I saw the alcohol and there are pictures. Whether they provided it or not is besides the point. There were enough giant bottles of vodka laying on the ground to make it clear that it was at least condoned and definitely not hidden or cleaned up.

I will definitely be contacting Pepsi (their main sponsor) and the clients of MIH Ventures with the pictures, and recommend others who saw and photographed this mess do the same.
July 20, 2009, 7:12 pm
Brooklyn Visitor from Bronx says:
Now its besides the point? Exactly how many bottles of vodka did you see? Because I saw a picture of 1 vodka bottle. You really seem to have a lot to say considering you have no idea what happened.

I have pictures of little kids playing that day and a homeless guy getting a free plate of food to eat. Where would you like me send those pictures?
July 20, 2009, 7:34 pm
Rhywun from Bay Ridge says:
I think the picture says it all. If the patrons could not be bothered to clean up after themselves, at the very least the organizer could have lifted a finger and cleaned up when it was done. Why didn't they?
July 20, 2009, 9 pm
Brooklyn Visitor from Bronx says:
Am I the only one who knows that a picture does not convey the entire story? Rhywun, were you there to know that the organizers did not lift a finger? As I said earlier, I attended the function. I saw the organizers and several helpers picking up trash throughout the field the entire day. And from what I hear, the organizers were in the park till the wee hours trying to clean up the mess. While it is evident that there was trash left on the field, I think many of you are commenting on something that you know nothing about. You are making assumptions which at the end of the day is unfair.
July 20, 2009, 9:19 pm
Realista from Harlem says:
They need to pay for the clean up. Reality is that they knew it was going to be over 1000 people (as cited in the email) and should have either had their own volunteers assigned to clean up duty or gotten the proper permits. Now, they need to pay the city for the mess they left. Plain and simple!
July 20, 2009, 10:05 pm
Tammy from visitor says:
I went to the event for the first time and was shocked to see firepits with little children running around, people basically bartending, and so many people cramped in to what would be consider a firehazard in an enclosed space. I am from California and this sort of display would never be allowed. I was with a friend, but was basically anxious to leave because I felt unsafe in such a harzardous environment. Secondly, it turned into a serious meat market. That is not what I call fun.
July 20, 2009, 10:07 pm
lila from prospect heights says:
Be easy... Tammy - stay home next time - you'll be safe there- one less person's trash to worry about. They did have a permit, but it is difficult to control people wandering over to an event like that in a public park, maybe they underestimated their popularity, but the parks dept. needs to help accountable as well.
July 20, 2009, 10:52 pm
Jed from Slope says:
lila from prospect heights says: 'Be easy... Tammy - stay home next time - you'll be safe there- one less person's trash to worry about. '

What about trash cleanup we end up paying pay for? And lawsuits/settlements we'd pay for if someone were injured?
And why should we pick up the tab for an illegal, no-permit promo event whose organizers were too clueless to "estimate" popularity or provide adequate trash pickup?
July 20, 2009, 11:12 pm
Jed from Slope says:
Brooklyn Visitor from Bronx says: "I have pictures of little kids playing that day and a homeless guy getting a free plate of food to eat. Where would you like me send those pictures?"
I'm sure that they were radiant with joy -- because I doubt that "little kids" and "a homeless guy" would be especially bothered by mass-trash, health/safety issues, or liability for an illegal event.
The rest of us ARE.
July 20, 2009, 11:20 pm
Tammy from visitor says:
Thanks for the backup Jed!

Lila, trust me darling I have no interest in being associated with an event of that nature. It may have started with good, organized intent...but big is not necessarily better. Btw, we are much more environmentally conscious in California. Come visit anytime!
July 20, 2009, 11:24 pm
dat dude ha from flatbush says:
@Tammy-what part of the park is an enclosed space. While revelers did gravitate towards southern end of Long Meadow, the meadow was less than half filled. There was plenty of space to accomodate the crowd.
@Kristyn - contact the MLB the main sponsor of the Bon Jovi concert in Central Park in 08 and complain about the amount drug usage going on that night.
Ok. The general problem is garbage, right? C'mon people this is an easily addressed problem. A few dumpsters and overtime payment for park department employees. Or, dumpsters and a private company for clean-up. No big deal. By the way, the park is dirty every Monday morning in the summer during my 7:30 drive through the park.
The paper needs to report that there was a large, peaceful outing for young professionals that took place without any incidents. Just face it, even with the garbage problem addressed, the community will come up with other excuses to stop this great gathering.
July 20, 2009, 11:50 pm
belle from crown heights says:
are you kidding me? associated with an event like what? there were thousands of people. not one single arrest IN ( YEARS. meat market? i was there for 3 hours. it was not like a club. it's a park full of black people with degrees and advanced degrees. it's a high school/ college/ grad school reunion. and the MIH owners are respectable Black men.

the event was multiple times larger than it has been. the word is spreading about the event. they were clearly overwhelmed as the park has NEVER been left like this before. it's a terrible accident. totally not intentional and no one meant to disrespect the park. everyone there LOVES that park as much as the passionate commenters here.

and pepsi was not the sponsor.
July 21, 2009, 12:01 am
Miss D from Crown Heights says:
MIH has held this event for years and has never received such flack. While I understand the concern of the leftover trash and lack of respect for the park, the blame cannot fully be on the promoters. At one point, they had people walking around with trash bags urging people to dispose of their trash accordingly and like someone said, there were continuous pleas for people to pick up after themselves.

If this is the first time anyone has had to complain about Heatwave, then that is surely a testament to what they've been able to do for a group of people (albeit a large group) looking to have a great day in the park. It became bigger than ever and was hard to contain. So I understand the frustration but the blame is not being placed fully in the right direction.
July 21, 2009, 12:12 am
Michelle from Prospect Heights says:
First of all I was there and it was one of the most beautiful gatherings of Black professionals that I have seen in a while. Everyone I knew who attended had a GREAT time at the event that occurre without incident. To the poster who felt somehow threatened or fearful of her safety probably has not spent time around a large number of educated Black people but contrary to media reports, we do exist.

And it's just trash people. Geez. And they had to have a permit bc the police were there! And allowed it to continue. As usual I suspect that if this were a more "Woodstock" like gathering of lighter folks there would not be such an outcry about one morning of trash.
July 21, 2009, 12:45 am
belle from crown heights says:
i stand corrected. i believed another beverage company was the event sponsor.

the rest of my post still stands. they promoters and attendees from this event are 99% responsible people and if most ppl had known this mess would have occurred they would have stayed in the dark to clean up. i believe it was a case of the event growing beyond its usual capavity and a lot of ne faces that didn't know the protocol. i was with a group that did BBQ and we cleaned up all of our space. the vast majority of the attendees of that event respect the park and enjoy it as much as anyone else. it's a very unfortunate circumstance, but it does not make the attendees low lifes. please refrain from that language.
July 21, 2009, 12:54 am
Michelle from Prospect says:
With the emergence of Twitter and Facebook this event grew beyond MIH within a couple hours. MIH personally invites friends and colleagues. Prospect is a public park that is attended daily by runners, joggers, softball games, dog walkers, bike riders that emerge on the park even more on Sunday beautiful days. If these people decide to come lay out or bring a grill no one entity can be held responsible. And they did have a permit for that date. On another blog showed a copy of it. I also heard that they spent 3 hours cleaning up the trash in the dark using car headlights. Trash of people that they did not know. I have attended their event in past years and it is always clean. I can't believe the ignorance that I am reading in some of these statements - clearly a problem we have in society today. Some people like to take a small piece and make it whole story without knowing the facts. Get your story straight people. And I heard there wasn't any sponsors. What is there to sponsor - some burgers and hotdogs on a grill?
July 21, 2009, 5:04 am
Valerie from Caroll Gardens says:
Hey guys, how about you call Mr. George Smith running to represent the community in the City Council elections. I know he does alot of events in city parks, so I know he will love to what he can about this problem. Feel free to call him anytime, he is the only candidate that has a hotline number on all his posters and him himself picks up the phone so everyone would be able to talk to him.. Just look at any of his posters by the park
July 21, 2009, 7:42 am
Michael from Bay Ridge says:
Terrible headline, really classless.
July 21, 2009, 8:09 am
Charles from Park Slope says:
This article is a prime example of irresponsible journalism. First off, MIH must have had a permit because the NYPD was present. Second of all, the park is ALWAYS dirty on Monday. Why don't you show pictures of what the park looks like after Celebrate Brooklyn or on Monday mornings in general? Your so called paper is using MIH as a scapegoat. I have attended this event for the past 6 years and have seen the promoters urge the people to clean up after themselves.

This is an obvious and lame attempt by Racist Park Slope Hippies to prevent peaceful, young , BLACK professionals from taking over "their park". I wonder if this would've been a story if it were an "indie rock" crowd.

Prospect Park belongs to everyone in Brooklyn, not just Park Slope residents! You need to focus on the bigger issue: Budget Cuts = Dirtier Park.
July 21, 2009, 8:33 am
takeiteasy from brooklyn says:
How can there be a gathering, mainly of minorities, and no "incidents" police found substantial take place? Why, because this event was geared toward young, upscale individuals. So, no "incidents", we have to focus on GARBAGE. Oh yeah, while we are at it, let's say that no permit was obtained. A LIE. The permit is obtained annually.
We'll address the GARBAGE problem, and you guys will come up with another issue, like parking spaces for the local residents during this day.
July 21, 2009, 8:57 am
Now Hear This from PH says:
Would "professionals" leave mounds and mounds of tranh behind if they were having a party in their own house? I don't think so. The Golden Rule should apply here. To everyone.
If people would take out what they brought in, the park would be a much cleaner and safer environment.
That's all, and it's that simple.
July 21, 2009, 9:23 am
brooklyn visitor from bronx says:
Now Hear This from PH: lets be real. The park is open to EVERYONE! Your sarcasm just makes you seem ignorant.
July 21, 2009, 9:43 am
DoTheRightThing from Sunset Park says:
Bring it in, take it out. Slobs are slobs, no matter what race, gender, ethnic origin or education. I've seen slobs on pristine beaches in East Hampton, yakking on cell phones while strewing junk all over the place. Parts of Brooklyn that are allegedly "notorious" are home to some of the cleanest blocks in the city. It's all a matter of personal responsibility.
July 21, 2009, 9:53 am
Kiki says:
The deal is not who had the event or who showed up, it's the trash, period. When I first saw the trash and heard about the company that sponsored the event my initial knee-jerk reaction was "Damn stupid yuppie hipsters!" I assumed it was people from Williamsburg or Carroll Gardens who don't live near the park and didn't care about it. Yes, the company had a permit, but it wasn't for the thousand people who showed up, which they were hoping for, if you look at their evite (which says that last year they had a thousand people and this year they were hoping for more). They knew a lot of people would be coming to this event, they should have applied for a different permit so that the parks department knew the number expected in advance. Celebrate Brooklyn looks just as trashy right after the event (because face it, many people are disgusting slobs), but trash is picked up afterwards. I've been at the park the day after Celebrate Brooklyn and the Philharmonic and it looked NOTHING like it did last Monday. Bottom line - the company responsible for this event is financially responsible for the cleanup.
July 21, 2009, 10:15 am
Black Gal from Park Slope says:
That picture is definitely a demonstration of a dirty park, but we all know that people must have cleaned up after themselves because it would have been much DIRTIER. An event with over 3000 --that's a little bit of trash. Now, that doesn't mean someone should not have cleaned up. As a matter of fact, hopefully next year they'll hire someone to do just that.

But, I think the indignant anger over the Park has a little bit of a racial undertones and guess what... Next year the party will continue.
July 21, 2009, 10:16 am
Take a deep breath from Park Slope says:
The issue at hand is garbage. You should not introduce a smear campaign on an independent event planning company without giving them the opportunity to make it right. It is wrong and hurtful to hear the types of comments that I have heard on this website and other blogs. Some people are bordering on harassment which is not acceptable. As I said previously give the owners a chance to make it right and don't blame them for a problem you have been griping about all summer. It is the personal responsibility of everyone who comes into the park to clean after themselves and I am sorry that MIH is being blamed for the careless actions of others. Let us learn from this and move on.
July 21, 2009, 11:10 am
Janet from Bensonhurst says:
Who knows if the evite is real? Who knows that it did come from MIH? Who knows that MIH was in that part of the field?

I run around that field and it is really long run. How do you know that there wasn't another group of people that were there and left their mess. I read that they have done this for years and I would assume that they clean up after themselves, because this is first time I am hearing their name or such complaints. I never even noticed any garbage cans in that field. Are there any? I don't understand what all this "I'm writing city council and the mayor" bs. It happened once and I am sure it was a mistake in some part and I am sure they will be willing to pay back in some way. They seem like smart people - so I am sure they will learn from the mistake. I hate when people act like their perfect and never made a mistake in their life. The fact is alot of people writing and commenting do not the whole story and just making accustions based of what someone else that doesn't know whole story is saying. Blind leading the blind.
July 21, 2009, 11:14 am
Roberto from Sheepshead Bay says:
I agree 120% with "Take a deep breath" I think it being blown out of proportion based on little known. Get all the facts first then make assessment. MIH is not responsible for that whole park. Like Janet said I never seen any garbage cans in that field either. We play softball games there 3 times a summer. And I always see little parties and picnics there, I do not stick around to see what it looks like the next day but I am sure trash has been left before. Talk to the company and let them address it before you publicly slander their name.
July 21, 2009, 11:18 am
Matt from Ft Greene says:
Why do they have to remind people to pick up their trash? Did they grow up in a barn?
July 21, 2009, 2:07 pm
Dez from Flatbush says:
its funny that ppl keep saying they got the wrong permit. there is one permit u fill out when having an event at any park...and thats only if the event will have 25 or more ppl. on it u list how many ppl u expect as well as if u will have any form of security. i know this cuz i just filled out a permit for prospect park last week. the park itself does not provide anything for ur events. no clean up crew, no extra trash cans, etc. i left the event early but did hear the announcements. MIH needs to bring more trash bags, ppl need to throw stuff away properly..but it is very difficult to estimate how many ppl will attend an event, especially one in free public space. but having the "right" permit solves nothing. there is one permit..they filled it out.

i have to agree with many other ppl on here: if this event consisted of white ppl and not black and brown ppl there would be no issue. the really sad part is, most black folks who are reading the racist nonsense that others are writing on this are almost unfazed by it. we would like to think we have taken huge strides forward, but clearly we havent. such a shame.
July 21, 2009, 3:32 pm
Kiki says:
I resent the implication that one has to be racist because they are upset by the mounds of trash left behind by a party. I don't care WHO did it, it's disgusting. If a bunch of white people trash the park I'm going to be equally upset. In fact, I DO get upset at the numbers of random people I see trashing the park, streets, etc., without a care in the world, white, black, brown, whatever. If you act like you live in a barn, you're trashy, period. Pick up after yourselves, people! The world is not your maid.
July 21, 2009, 3:40 pm
Blitz from Downtown says:
Trash isn't racist; Prospect Park is a sty each and every Monday at all ends of the park, whether its closer to the Slope or down by Flatbush. In the meadow or down by the lake. Total disrespect for the park and the city by extension.
If you're having a picnic or BBQ in the park, if you bring it in, you take it out. You're entitled to nothing. Many of those who use the park bring their stuff in by car - take it back out by car and put the trash in your own containers. Too bad.That's the problem with the mindset of many parkgoers - someone else will take care of it. The city will pick it up. The city will take care of everything. Bull. If people had a little more respect for themselves and for others in the city we all have to share, we wouldn't be throwing around race. Slobs are slobs. Lazy slobs are worse.
July 21, 2009, 3:45 pm
CC from Park Slope says:
One of our neighbors called the cops because cars were parked in front of fire hydrants and bus stops along PPW. He was told that tickets would be written "at an officer's discretion."

Amazing. Also, our doorman watched in disbelief as guys rode motorcycles up the Garfield entrance into the park.

I found the whole scene scary and gross, and the aftermath was appalling.

This is more than just garbage...
July 21, 2009, 4:01 pm
Jason from Kensington says:
Why is everyone arguing about this?
1)MIH Didn't have a permit (needed for gathering of more than 25 people)
2)MIH was well aware that their event would draw at least 1000 people.
End of story.
If I don't have a drivers license and get into a car accident it wouldn't matter one bit if I had announced to people that I would drive carefully and respect other drivers. All these implications and accusations of racism/classism/post-gentrification brooklynism are, frankly, moot. MIH had a non-permitted and therefore unlawful event. The Parks Dept. can't clean up after an event that they don't know about.
July 21, 2009, 4:03 pm
David from Park Slope says:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/opossumqueen/

There should be no debate - check out the pictures on this flickr site (scroll down a few rows) and then determine if this is an appropriate way to leave a public space.

Even permitted street fairs clean up after themselves. The Garbage is everywhere and the disregard for it is apparent.

There is just no basis of defense for this! A permit does not allow you to leave the park in such an unsafe, appalling state.
July 21, 2009, 4:55 pm
April from Queens says:
@Jason from Kensington.... of course your wrong about that permit. For the past 9 yrs they have applied and received a permit LEGALLY!
They have also not had a problem with the park in the "past 9yrs."
Jason, how come you just show up when there is a little trouble? Get a grip.
July 21, 2009, 4:58 pm
Daniel from Windsor Terrace says:
Trash is one thing, but the alcohol and drugs should not be allowed. Period. The NYPD or 'MIH Ventures' turned a blind eye. This is wrong, illegal and irresponsible. It will not be tolerated if it happens again. The park should remain safe for everyone at all times and not used a venue for a free-for-all. I would like to thank all of those who helped pick up the putrid mess left behind. I wish I was there to help.
July 21, 2009, 5:09 pm
Jason from Kensington says:
@April from Queens
Did I miss the part in the two articles that said MIH had a permit? The articles on the 20 and 21st say there was none. Are you saying that the articles are wrong?
July 21, 2009, 5:16 pm
Lila from PH says:
@ Jason - yes my friend - wrong, wrong, wrong - I mean they would have been arrested - authorities were there - this is a subpar paper that did not do its due diligence pertaining to fact checking - of course they had a permit.
July 21, 2009, 7:42 pm
Jason from Kensington says:
@Lila
so you are associated with MIH? I'm going by what the article and what the Parks Dept. are saying. If MIH rebuts the story by producing a permit that's one thing. So unless you are associated with MIH and are saying ,"I know for a fact that a permit was issued.", then you do not know. If you would care to detail what you know about the permit I'd love to hear it as it would change my outlook on this story.
July 21, 2009, 8:01 pm
Cee from Canarsie says:
I attended the event and heard all day from my arrival at 3pm until sundown ongoing announcements directing all attendees to place their trash in black bags that were located all around. The problem was that when the size of the crowd grew, so did the amount of garbage. And let's face it... it's a park. There are no bouncers... no one at a door saying "sorry, we're full to capacity" so there was no way to stop the mass amount of people from slowly coming in. I cannot comment about a permit but I can say that a good solution might be to end the festivities before sunset (like people do at parades) which would allow ample time for people to clear out and for the park to be cleaned. I agree with a previous poster who that since no "incidents" occurred at this large gathering of minorities, people have to find SOMETHING to have a hissy fit about. Some people don't feel good unless they have something to moan and groan about. Show me something that's been destroyed or rendered unusable and then I'll understand. But garbage that takes a few hours to clean up? Come on. Let's talk about something important like the ever increasing unemployment statistic or increased mass transit fares.
July 21, 2009, 8:59 pm
Rocky from South Brooklyn says:
I read somewhere else [Brooklynian] that apparently Marty Markowitz is pissed. Expect news conferences. This one won't die.
Remember, it's about slobs and people who just don't care about Prospect Park.
Can't defend a slob.
They come in all sizes and shapes. They can be highly educated and as dumb as dirt. Wealthy as a Rockefeller, or poor as a panhandler on the Q train.
Please, let's hear from the promoters. It's the only voice we really have not heard. I'm curious to hear what they have to say. I want to hear from Benepe who heads Parks. No more knuckleheads.
July 21, 2009, 10:36 pm
Rob from Park Slope says:
We give the police the authority to arrest people for drinking a beer or smoking a joint in the park. But MIH can only be fined. Which is the greater crime? Which does more immediate damage to other members of our community?

Give the police the legal means (criminalization of littering on a mass scale) and arrest a few of the party planners. A night at Riker's would be a good example to set for the next group who does something like this.

So long as littering is only publishable by fines, the idea of dumping a ton of crap in front of the organizer's place of work sounds like the right short-term retribution to me.

This type of mass neglect - the "I'm too good to pick up my crap," "Someone else will do that for me," or, worse still, "Whatever?" variety, starts a slippery slope. We can't tolerate this. Any one of the people attending the event could have done the right thing and chosen to clean up the mess themselves, even if it took an hour or two on their own.

Arrest. A night in jail. A couple weekends picking up trash on the Van Wyck. That's the "solution."
July 21, 2009, 11:07 pm
alain from park slope says:
takeiteasy from brooklyn says -- 'How can there be a gathering, mainly of minorities, and no "incidents" police found substantial take place? Why, because this event was geared toward young, upscale individuals. So, no "incidents", we have to focus on GARBAGE. '
---------------
That's bull.

This event frosted the cake - by hugely exacerbating a problem that ALREADY had people riled:
For weeks, people have complained re: Prospect Park's growing weekend-trash problem, illegal BBQing, etcetera.
[Those complaints rec'd ample coverage on this site -- stories, comments, editorial, the works.]
So I'd EXPECT people to notice, and be furious, if the park got even more mega-trashed on Sunday. It wouldn't matter WHO ran the event - Jesus, Buddha, Marty Markowitz, or MIH.

And fyi, your "young, upscale" terminology is repellently elitist. It's EVERYONE'S park. And those "upscale" folk left a lot of garbage for the non-"upscale" to deal with.
July 22, 2009, 1:23 am
On The Mark from Flatbush says:
Whatever. This whole incident reinforces all those old stereotypes. Especially since the promoter isn't talking. And I can't believe that some people are actually trying to defend him! There certainly is a lot of chicken going around here ...
July 22, 2009, 8:56 am
Kimberly S from Park Slope says:
I was one of the volunteers who cleaned up the mess. The commenters who say this was no big deal, that a senseless fit with racial overtones is being thrown over just a little garbage, are wrong. Either they weren't there, or they didn't stick around after the party to see the full devastation, or better yet, help clean up.

It took about 40 people, mostly volunteers, and 2 dump trucks more than 4 hours to clean up two acres of totally devastated land. Many people were working without gloves, picking up open trash that was crawling with vermin overnight--very dangerous. There was maybe a total of 10 full trash bags--the rest was open trash that was simply abandoned. This was not a matter of picking up a little trash left behind--this was a disaster. Hundreds, literally hundreds, of pounds of open trash. That space was entered a park, and left a landfill.

Look at the pictures. We picked up hundreds of liquor and beer bottles. Hundreds. I was there. I know what I saw. There was an enormous amount of illegal alcohol/bottles at this event.

Many young children came to the park Monday morning for day camp and to play soccer. The day camp kids were at the Picnic Area, which was filthy, and the soccer kids couldn't play in their usual spot because it was covered in trash and broken glass. As of Wednesday morning, there is still broken glass, food, and bones scattered all over the Meadow--it will probably be about a month before that space fully recovers.

So don't try to say this was no big deal. It was a nightmare. ANY group that would leave the park like this would engender this kind of public response--ANY group. Period.
July 22, 2009, 9:20 am
Dave from Park Slope says:
What is really telling is how quiet MIH has been since this broke. I wrote emails to all of the "leaders" and none has had the decency to respond to me or the press. Spineless.

It hit the Daily News this morning and hopefully they lose business over this disrespectful event. For those who seem to have made it a racial issue....quit being so sensitive. A bunch of adults trashed a community park and did nothing to correct the problem. The only good news is that they will never be allowed to have another event in Brooklyn without drawing a ton of attention to themselves.
July 22, 2009, 9:42 am
Rob from Park Slope says:
@Alain - Don't know about "young" per se, but you're right on with your take on the term "upscale." "Upscale" is code for elitist. Clearly the attendees were too busy being fabulous and “upscale” to take care of their trash.

This is a dangerous pathology and I think why so many folks are reacting. Any of the attendees had the power to take individual responsibility for addressing this problem (e.g. going to get some trash bags and picking up the trash themselves). If darkness was an issue, why didn't the promoters come back in the morning to see that this got dealt with? The mess was still there at 9am.

Though obviously on a much, much smaller scale, this is the same pathology that leads to events like the "financial meltdown.” The mentality at the BBQ appears to have been “There’s a ton of trash here and I don’t think a mechanism is in place to deal with it. That could be a problem, but I’m having fun. Someone else will deal will this.” It’s not unlike “Hey, I’m losing $500M a day on my terminal in mortgage backed securities. That could be a problem, but I’m having fun. Someone else will deal with this.” If a bunch of people in Toledo lose their jobs and homes because of a bad bet I make on credit default swap, so what? I’m fabulous and having fun. Someone else will pick up my mess. If a bunch of trash is left behind by my party in Prospect Park, ruining it for others, so what? I’m fabulous and having fun. Someone else will pick up my mess. Smaller scale, but the same pathology of elitism. We can give it no quarter -- this form of elitism must be crushed absolutely. Provided a legal provision to do so can be found, arrest the promoters and give them a night in jail. That’s what needs to happen here.

In the mean time I’d suggest that either this Saturday or next, a group of folks repulsed by these events…

1. Meet at Park Circle (Parkside Ave and PPSW) in the morning (e.g. 10am). Bring trash bags and gloves.
2. We walk, silently, across the park towards Grand Army Plaza, spreading out “Hands Across America” style, creating a line from end to end in the park as we walk north, picking up trash.
3. We regroup near the tree near where the BBQ was centered (not far from Grand Army Plaza), have a moment of reflection, then continue our trash pick up to the Plaza.
4. We dump our trash in available bins at that end of the park.
5. From there we walk to Bergen St and MIH, where we have a silent protest for 20 minutes, after which we have a vocal protest for 5-10 minutes.

Probably 1.5 hours start to finish.
July 22, 2009, 10:13 am
Rabble from Bensonhurst says:
Fabulous or not fabulous, the whole thing stanks of the ghetto. I guess one can put lipstick on a pig ...
July 22, 2009, 11:53 am
Brooklyn4eva from Clinton Hill says:
I wish we could get the same response to:

Police shooting unarmed people! It just a park.
July 22, 2009, 2:36 pm
Seriously?? from Brooklyn says:
LMAO @Rob from Park Slope!!!! OMG!!! A kum-bah-yah session followed by a silent protest???!!! Are you serious??? LOLOLOL!!!

Its trash. Period. Let it go. And I agree with Brooklyn4eva. Police allow uneventful BBQ to continue without breaking up elicits an UPROAR from Park Slope residents but young innocent and unarmed men get shot and killed all the time by the police and....***crickets***. What a shame.
July 22, 2009, 3:05 pm
Rob from Park Slope says:
@Seriously??

I said nothing about "kum-bah-yah." There is a long tradition of non-violent, action oriented protest which I believe would be effective here. It would allow the community to demonstrate through actions, not words, what we wish our park and wider society to be about. Have you ever voluntarily gone to Prospect Park with your children to pick up other people's trash? I have and will do so again. It is an expression of humbleness and service. I think such action would be a proactive, positive way of expressing our rejection and repudiation of what happened Sunday.

My first choice response would be for the Kings County DA to find a legal provision for arrests, but that's highly unlikely to happen. I think this is viable second choice. What would you suggest? We all shrug it off and say "Whatever" -- that's the mentality that allowed this to happen in the first place.
July 22, 2009, 4 pm
NoTrash from DUMBO says:
Brooklyn4eva-

What planet are you on? I seem to recall Sean Bell illicit-ed a HUGE uproar, Abner Louima, Amado Diallo, the lynching of Michael Griffith in Howard Beach the list goes on. It's a breach of the public trust when the police do this. I seem to recall, going back to the 1980's huge community reactions to racial attacks, profiling, etc. I recall subways being stopped by Reverend AL (who I voted for) , the Crown Heights riots

The police will do nothing about the park. Is that the type of response you want, rather than investigations and convictions of officers shooting unarmed people?

This is about respect and public trust. In all the cases I sighted above, there was huge reactions from the community. It's those elected and those who set policy that are derelict in their duties. When the people lead, the leaders will follow.

Someone throwing trash on a public park is not only a violation of the public trust, it says a lot about the individual. It's not about race, it's about self respect and respect for others. Those making this a racial issue, have problems in their own thinking and comprehension of others.

"Be the change you want to see in the World" Mohandas Gandhi.
July 22, 2009, 5:28 pm
MV from Sunset Park says:
Everybody complaining should go sleepover at Bloomberg's house. That was a great party. This is New York City, sometimes things get dirty.
July 22, 2009, 6:24 pm
NoTrash from DUMBO says:
@MV from Sunset Park

"This is New York City, sometimes things get dirty"

Apathy at it's finest.

Let me ask you, how long have you lived in New York?

I was born and raised here.

We had, GARBAGE everywhere!

People urinating EVERYWHERE!

The subway a real sewer, complete with crack stems and hypo needles at every stop.

"This is New York City, sometimes people get shot"
"This is New York City, sometimes women get raped"
"This is New York City, sometimes people smoke crack and share HIV needles"

was the mantra of the early 1990's.

Bravo to those complaining.
July 22, 2009, 6:45 pm
Stupefied from Park Slope says:
MV from Sunset Park says: "This is New York City, sometimes things get dirty."
Maybe you didn't see what it looked like after the crowd left?
Because "things" didn't just "get" dirty: a private event-p.r. company dumped *#@! on the park, didn't clean up as park regs require, and stuck Parks and volunteers with one helluva nasty job ... w/o which the park was filthy, unsafe and unuseable.
If that were "N.Y.C. Normal," there'd be no parks to have events like this IN.
July 23, 2009, 12:23 pm
The Real from Prospect Heights says:
People who do what they did last Sunday are an embarrassment. Yeah, real educated professionals. Right. All the stereotypes were left behind, except there were no watermelon rinds in the pictures. That's what you get for "education". I still can't believe there are people on this thread and the other one on this site who are defending these clowns. The clowns that didn't clean up anything. The garbage was left in place on the lawn. The photos don't lie.
And it'll probably be just as bad this weekend.
And no one has come forward in print. No elected officials. The city parks commissioner hasn't said anything on record. Nothing. Loudmouth Markowitz hasn't said anything for public consumption. And the chicken-bone promoters of this "event" have a yellow streak right up their backs. Unreal. Pack that in your Escalade.
But I guess we're the ones who have been "educated" by "professionals" ...
It's like no one wants to touch it.
July 23, 2009, 12:40 pm
Stupefied from Park Slope says:
date dude: If this trash problem is "easily addressed" and "no big deal," why didn't MIH deal with it? They're a prof'l company, they run events like this for a living, they've had this event for years, and parks regs REQUIRE that permit-holders clean up after themselves.

You don't just piles and strata of trash, say "whatever, we tried," and walk off, as if it's not your problem.
Especially since parks permits say, upfront, that you're liable for damages and cost of undone cleanup. (Major cleanup = overtime billed to taxpayers ... for someone's private event.)
So what's these guys' excuse? No permit? Didn't read the permit? Or too wacked-out to BE in this kind of business?
July 23, 2009, 12:42 pm
Kady from Clinton Hill says:
To the misanthropes who continue to post nonsense, please review MIH's response:

http://www.mihventures.com/Statement_from_MIHventures.pdf
July 23, 2009, 6:21 pm
The Real from Prospect Heights says:
Thanks for the 10-dollar word. I call bull——.
The park wasn't cleaned up until late Monday.
July 23, 2009, 6:26 pm
Pat K from Slope says:
We.'re lucky we had all this rain in June and parts of July because the damn Park would have burned up, unless of course they wanted to enforce the BBQ situation.Park.

While biking through the Park Sunday there was this BBQ haze over la large part of the Park. Isn't that pollution comming from a Green area. Seems everyone wants to be in Prospect Park this Summer, less traveling vacations, the usual crowd that's out of town is IN on weekends, it's getting out of hand.
July 23, 2009, 9:33 pm
BK Sweetie from Crown Heights says:
The organizers should have anticipated and made some allowance for the inevitable mess. If people go to a baseball game or to the movies, of course, they're encouraged to clean up their trash, but inevitably at a large event, you need to have a real cleaning crew present to make sure that the space is actually cleaned.

The organizers should have known this, considering that they are an "event planning" business.
July 24, 2009, 8:32 am
Milii from Prospect Park says:
The truth be told, these so called "parties" are nothing but excuses to drink, to sell drugs and to engage into all kind of questionable activities. The trash that was left is a good way of confirming it: Drug bags galore, liquor containers, etc.

Why the police does not keep a closer eye into these so called "parties" is beyond me.
July 26, 2009, 5:52 pm
Guest from Prospect Heights says:
http://www.bbg.org/vis2/linnaeanlibationleague/

This group of professionals had a sponsored party, and there wasn't a huge mess. The difference is, MIH Ventures decided to save money and use tax dollars to provide their venue and cleanup.
Aug. 14, 2009, 3:55 pm
Winston Smith from Poop Slope says:
So is the Brooklyn Paper gonna follow up and see if MIH ever did anything to make up for this. Is there a system in place to see that it never happens again.

http://poop-slope.blogspot.com/2010/05/what-should-they-do-with-their-crap.html
May 17, 2010, 10:51 am

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