Brooklyn Flea Philly launched last Sunday at the Piazza at Schmidt’s in Philadelphia’s new up-and-coming neighborhood of Northern Liberties, aka NoLibs. Like its twin brother in Williamsburg, the open-air market will run every Sunday 10am-5pm and will feature a tightly curated selection of art, antique and repurposed furniture, vintage clothing and jewelry.
With a greatly successful kick-off, complemented by performances from Questlove and DJ PHSH, Brooklyn Flea Philly joined Philadelphia’s collection of Williamsburg transplants. Other stops on the how-to-feel-like-you’re-in-Brooklyn tour of Philadelphia include: Stephen Starr’s Fette Sau and Frankford Hall, Barcade, as well as the new co-working space 3rdWard.
Historically, neighborhoods such as Little Italy, Little India, Koreatown, Germantown etc. were formed due to migration and settlement of different ethnic groups. Today new neighborhoods form around distinct patterns of consumption. Prospective residents are looking not just for a place but also for amenities and experiences that would help them fashion their sense of identity and craft their personal narrative.
That’s why Williamsburg transplants in Philadelphia’s Northern Liberties and Fishtown are so much fun to watch. They seek to cater to the need for authenticity, community and a distinct sense of place through a replicable formula. So is it possible that the Brooklyn Flea market could become the next Park(ing) Day, a make-your-own-park event that originated in San Francisco and was re-enacted in over 165 cities around the world?