PARK SLOPE — A vandal has turned out the lights on Christmas.
The 20-foot tree at the corner of Fifth Avenue and Fourth Street, lit on Nov. 28 by the Fifth Avenue Park Slope Business Improvement District, was targeted over the weekend.
Mark Caserta, who heads the group, said he learned Monday morning that the tree’s power cords were cut. A police report has been filed and area surveillance cameras are being reviewed, he said.
A spokesman for the NYPD was unable to immediately confirm they were investigating.
Caserta said it wouldn’t make sense economically to relight the tree this late in the holiday season, but that it will likely be brought back next year with new security measures.
Caserta said the tree, which in past years was located at 5th Avenue and 3rd Street, had brought valuable attention to the neighborhood.
"We had nothing but really positive feedback about it from merchants and people visiting the avenue,” he said Tuesday. “It was great.”
Sam Tse, who manages Park Optics across 5th Avenue from the tree, said that though the Christmas season was slow for his business, he enjoyed the fir.
"It's good that the Business Improvement District is thinking about ways to bring in more foot traffic," Tse said.
Helen Sanya, a manager at the nearby L'Albero Dei Gelati, said her young son enjoyed the tree's lights and that, while its biggest impact on business came during its lighting ceremony, she wanted the tree back next year.
At Bagel World next door, manager Reuben Oaxaca said he saw families taking pictures of the tree's lights.
"More people, maybe more customers," he said.
"Who would do such a thing?" said a local resident named Stephanie, after learning that the lights had been snipped. She had stopping by to take a few small twigs from the tree's branches as a souvenir.
Stephanie said she had visited the tree while it was lit, adding that she "took a picture and put it on Facebook and told all my friends this is what Park Slope Brooklyn looks like."