I'm a freelance writer/photographer living in the East Village neighborhood of New York City.
As the saying goes, one person's trash is another's treasure. So, whether your holiday left you with a bunch of unwanted items or you just want to start spring cleaning a little early, come by one of GrowNYC's annual swap meets to drop off some new or gently used items or to hunt for something useful for yourself.
Since launching the program in 2008, the Stop 'N' Swap meets have become one of GrowNYC's favorite programs. Last year, hundreds of people stopped by the Clemente Soto Velez Cultural and Educational Center in New York's Lower East Side to search through hundreds of reusable items, a boon for families during tough economic times. Piles of unwanted books, clothing, children's toys and household items lined tables ready to be claimed. Best of all, the items were not destined to landfills, which is the main idea behind the swap initiative.
This year's Stop 'N' Swap events will take place throughout January and February at the following locations:
Staten Island - Saturday, January 8, 11AM-2PM
St. George Library, 5 Central Ave at Hyatt St. (one block from the Staten Island Ferry Terminal)
Manhattan (Inwood) - Saturday, January 22, 11AM-2PM
I.S. 52 Cafeteria, 650 Academy St. (Between Broadway & Vermilyea)
Bronx (Mott Haven) - Saturday, February 5, 11AM-2PM
BronxWorks Betances Community Center, 547 E. 146th St. (at St. Ann's Avenue)
Queens (Jackson Heights) - Saturday, February 12, 11AM-2PM
Renaissance Charter School (basement cafeteria)
35-59 81st St. (Between 37th & 35th Avenues)
Brooklyn (Ft. Greene) - Saturday, February 26, 11AM-2PM
M.S. 113 lobby, 300 Adelphi Street (Between DeKalb and Lafayette Streets)
All events are free. Remember, all items brought to swap events must be clean, in working condition, and small enough to be carried, which means leave the furniture at home. Happy hunting!