Brooklyn residents came out in droves to the waterfront Friday morning to witness the official reopening and ribbon-cutting ceremony at Fairway Market Red Hook. The 39,000-square-foot store at 480-500 Van Brunt Street, was completely gutted in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, when it was flooded with five feet of water and suffered severe financial losses.
None of Fairway's employees—many of whom live in Red Hook—lost a day's worth of pay, however. Vice Chairman of Development and grandson of the founder of Fairway Market, Howie Glickberg, along with his son Executive Vice President Dan Glickberg, ensured all staff were relocated to other stores during its renovation.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Sen. Charles Schumer, Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz and Miss America 2013 Mallory Hagan, were just a few of those who spoke at the event.
Anecdotes, tears, laughter and roars of applause at the press conference were all a preamble to the store's doors reopening at 10 a.m., when crowds of shoppers began pouring in to buy vegetables, meats, cheeses, prepared noodles or possibly Fairway's "bagel and a schmear," which Mayor Bloomberg said was one of the best he'd ever tasted.
Assemblywoman Joan Millman [feat. in video above] was shopping not only for herself, but for constituents who had sent her a long list of items they had been missing from the store.
As part of a continuing effort to help the community, Fairway Market is teaming with ReStore Red Hook, organizers noted. Customers are being asked to donate to www.restoreredhook.org, through the purchase of t-shirts being sold at checkout stations. Funds will go straight to small businesses damaged by Sandy, and then Fairway Market will match all contributions up to $20,000.
Check out the rest in the video above!