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Expanded Brooklyn Night Bazaar Begins Black Friday

By Meredith Hoffman | November 23, 2012 7:12am

WILLIAMSBURG — As Americans scramble to stuff their shopping bags, Aaron Broudo is also spending Black Friday at the marketplace — launching his newly expanded Brooklyn Night Bazaar in a 40,000-square-foot warehouse.

"We're having one room with all food vendors, crafts, artists, designers and music," said Broudo, 34, who left his job as a lawyer five months ago to dedicate more time to his Williamsburg market.

"Another room will be more of an art installation/sports room with 20 ping pong tables and an indoor soccer field. It should be a lot of fun. I'm a big soccer player."

Broudo's festival — which is returning to its location on North 5th Street — will run five weekends this winter, compared with the brief three-day event held last year in the neighborhood.

"We're opening on the biggest shopping day of the United States so we expect a lot of people to be shopping there," he said of the market that mixes art forms both for entertainment and commerce.

And this year, he noted, even the musical acts — including TV On the Radio's Kyp Malone, Pains of Being Pure at Heart, and Black Dice — are completely free of charge.

"It's great. ...Everything is coming together," he said at the warehouse Monday afternoon as he finished preparations. "We thought there was a capacity for the holiday season. There was a lot of interest in vendors to have it longer."

Broudo, who first gained inspiration from Southeast Asia's night markets that he visited when traveling after college, said the Brooklyn Night Bazaar distinctly has "the flavor of local Brooklyn independent artists and musicians."

Food vendors are also participating in the bazaar, and a few restaurants are hosting fixed-price dinners in the mezzanine of the warehouse overlooking the stands. The Brooklyn restaurant Pok Pok, for instance, will be hosting dinners Dec. 13 and 14, he said.

Even entrepreneurs wounded by Hurricane Sandy plan to attend the festival,  including Pockets Full of Dough, a Rockaway-based business whose home and cooking supplies were ruined.

"They're still going to be there," he said of the vendor that sells fresh seafood, pasta and baked goods. "It's a hardship, but they are getting it together to participate."

The Brooklyn Night Bazaar starts Nov. 23 and runs Friday and Saturday nights on 45 N. 5th St.,  from 6 p.m. to 12 a.m. A detailed list of participants can be found on the festival's website.