The holidays are in full swing in Bay Ridge, where two adjacent Business Improvement Districts have joined forces to share the spirit of the season with residents and shoppers.
The Bay Ridge Fifth Avenue BID and the 86th Street BID, along with Dime Bank, jointly sponsored a free holiday trolley — with Santa on board — to ferry shoppers between 65th and 86th Streets the past two Saturdays, with the trolley making a return visit on Saturday, December 20, from noon to 4 p.m., beginning from Bay Ridge Parkway and Fifth Avenue where the Fifth Avenue BID has set up its holiday tree.
For both thoroughfares, spreading holiday cheer is a natural extension of what they do all year long.
“We’re trying to draw attention to Fifth Avenue,” noted Mike Long, the chair of the BID’s Audit Committee. “Hopefully, all the merchants will have a successful holiday season. There’s a lot on Fifth Avenue for the citizens of Bay Ridge – the trolley and the tree and the lighting. It’s our way of giving back to the residents.”
John Gallucci, the president of the 86th Street BID – which also put up lights as well as banners in addition to co-sponsoring the trolley and having “a singing clock” outside Century 21 that plays holiday music — said the festive atmosphere draws shoppers to the strip.
The trolley, he added, has been “a huge success.” Last year, during the trolley’s inaugural run, “I never saw the street this crowded since my mother took me shopping there as a child. It’s great.”