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Where’s the Grand Army Plaza Christmas Tree?

City says it couldn’t pony up $3,000 for the tree because of Hurricane Irene’s clean-up costs.

Grand Army Plaza has been noticeably less festive this year without a Christmas tree, and that’s because city officials didn’t have the $3,000 it costs to cut a fresh tree and decorate it, says the Daily News.

Prosepct Park Alliance spokesman Paul Nelson told the Daily News that the lack of tree funding was due to extra money being spent on cleaning up Hurricane Irene’s damage, which downed about 100 trees in the park.

But it looks like if a tree will return to Grand Army Plaza, it will have to come through private donations.

The Daily News quoted Borough President Marty Markowitz’s spokesperson as saying that he is “confident that a benefactor can be found to sponsor a privately-funded Christmas tree at Grand Army Plaza next year.” 

Grand Army Plaza is still home to , though, sponsored by the Chabad of Prospect Heights. The first lighting, on December 20, was attended by Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Borough President Markowitz.

But if you're still itching for more lights, of Prospect Heights residents’ holiday decorations, as well as .

Chicken Underwear December 24, 2011 at 11:49 AM
If the Chabad paid for the menorah, why didn't some church pay for the tree? Just saying...
Tatiana December 24, 2011 at 02:20 PM
Were any efforts made to collect donations for the Christmas tree???
Parksloper December 24, 2011 at 05:02 PM
I just came here to find out what happened to the tree. I haven't seen any information asking for donations to help with a tree and I'm sure the same goes for local churches. Why didn't Lander allocate 3,000.00 from the participatory budget? Disgraceful.
Parksloper December 24, 2011 at 05:26 PM
Also, where did the money for the fireworks on New Years Eve come from?
Chicken Underwear December 24, 2011 at 05:33 PM
I am glad my tax money did not pay for a tree. and BTW the money from the participatory budget has not been allocated yet, let alone spent. and.... Grand Army Plaza is not in Lander's district.
Chicken Underwear December 24, 2011 at 05:35 PM
from the Prospect Park Facebook.... Prospect Park Find out the best places to see the New Year's Eve fireworks around Grand Army Plaza, sponsored by Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz.
Tall T December 25, 2011 at 11:28 PM
Noticed the question about why funds couldn't come from the participatory budgeting process and wanted to pass along this info: http://pbnyc.org/content/about-new-york-city-process. Aside from the point made earlier about districts, the process will mostly fund capital improvement projects voted on by community members so something like the tree wouldn't really fit. Hope that's helpful!
adorabella December 26, 2011 at 11:51 PM
Given the amount of $$ spent at GAP (for paint alone!!!) the $3k rationale seem weak. The failure to erect the GAP holiday tree ( a more than 50 year tradition) seems like another step at dividing the electorate by creating conflict over non-issues (e.g. drivers v. bicyclers, bicylers v. pedestrians, trees v. menorahs) in order to divert attention from other more important matters .. By the way, holiday trees are not religious symbols, at least according to our court system.
Parksloper December 27, 2011 at 02:56 AM
"sponsored by Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz." So Marty is footing the bill personally? Tall T Thanks. No such thing as a Holiday Tree. It's always been and always will be a Christmas Tree.
Chicken Underwear December 27, 2011 at 03:03 AM
That means it comes out of the Borough President's discretionary budget
Tyler A. Chase December 27, 2011 at 09:32 PM
The tree last year was artificial. Its just inexcusable and a sign that the elected officials don't care about the people of Park Slope. I'm not Christian but I do enjoy the joy of Christmas and the traditions that have been in this country for hundreds of years.
Tyler A. Chase December 27, 2011 at 09:34 PM
Maybe when people boycott all the vendors and sellers for the Christmas celebrations then they will consider it part of their improvement project... Thanks for the information Tall T.
Tyler A. Chase December 27, 2011 at 09:36 PM
Maybe Markowitz doesn't like the people who celebrate Christmas? I think he should reconsider his stance since he is elected and he can't stop traditions for his own whims.
Tyler A. Chase December 27, 2011 at 09:36 PM
But it has been an artificial tree for the past couple of years. Where's the debt?
Tyler A. Chase December 27, 2011 at 09:37 PM
Please let me know if there is anything being done to get the tree back and how we can make sure this doesn't happen again.
Chicken Underwear December 27, 2011 at 09:41 PM
Why don't you donate money to an organization that wants to pay for a CHRISTmas tree.
Tyler A. Chase December 27, 2011 at 09:59 PM
I see you emphasize the Christ in Christmas Tree, Mr. chicken underwear. Now I really get it. You are a hater
Tyler A. Chase December 27, 2011 at 10:02 PM
Like all other Park Slopers I wasn't aware of a tree problem or that there was a funding issue. I don't think it is a funding issue otherwise it would have been paid for by Park Slopers who like their traditions. It is a hater problem.
Tyler A. Chase December 27, 2011 at 10:07 PM
it is disgraceful and inexcusable. The tree last year was artificial. I have video of it. I think it has to do with people who hate
Chicken Underwear December 27, 2011 at 10:16 PM
What?? I am just saying that the tree is a Christian symbol. Why should I pay for it.
Parksloper December 29, 2011 at 02:02 AM
Chicken; First, it's not a Christian symbol. "In its letter, the ACLJ said the Supreme Court has clearly indicated that governmental bodies are free to celebrate the holiday season with symbols of the season. In a 1989 decision, the high court said: "The Christmas tree, unlike the menorah, is not itself a religious symbol. Although Christmas trees once carried religious connotations, today they typify the secular celebration of Christmas." Furthermore, the Supreme Court and numerous lower courts have held that nativity scenes and menorahs may be displayed on government property without violating the constitution." Second, since Marty is a jew then the Prospect Park Alliance all must be jews and or Christmas Tree hating liberals because the Alliance is also sponsoring the fireworks. So, we have money for the giant Menorah, Fireworks, Refreshments and a Band, but not a lousy 3k for a Christmas Tree. My donations will be going elsewhere. "Borough President Marty Markowitz, together with the Prospect Park Alliance, will sponsor a free New Year's Celebration with musical entertainment by Brooklyn’s Rock ‘N’ Soul Experience and plenty of hot chocolate."
Chicken Underwear December 29, 2011 at 01:13 PM
Wow, First Wow! Second, just because the ACLU and the Supreme Court says it is not a Christian symbol does not mandate the government to put a tree where you think a tree must be. So why don't you ask Marty (askmarty@brooklynbp.nyc.gov). why he did not put a tree under the arch. But wait, when I looked up Marty's email address I saw photos of two different trees around Borough Hall, one inside and one outside. So haw many trees do you need? When will you be happy with the tree back in Grand Army Plaza next year or do we need one in every traffic circle in Brooklyn. Third, are you really blaming the lack of tree on the fact that Marty is a Jew? I know the Board of Directors of The Prospect Park Alliance and the Staff of Prospect Park are all mixed up in their religions afflictions, (http://www.prospectpark.org/about/alliance/board), so do you think there is a conspiracy of "Jews and or Christmas Tree hating liberals" to suck the Christmas Spirit out of Brooklyn's grandest traffic circle. Finally, as a Druid I find this preoccupation with trees comforting.
Parksloper December 30, 2011 at 02:36 AM
For God's sake Chicken, you said the Christmas Tree is a Christian symbol, I pointed out your mistake. Second, for years there has always been a Christmas Tree at Grand Army, nobody is saying the "govt mandate one". Try and keep up. Why no public notice of a lack of funds for the Christmas Tree and asking the community for donations?
Chicken Underwear December 30, 2011 at 02:49 AM
Ask Marty (askmarty@brooklynbp.nyc.gov) not me. I honestly don't care. But I did not that the Prospect Park Alliance was pleading poverty because of all the trees that were damaged in the past year or so. and Merry Christmas Happy Hanukkah Good Kwanzaa Harpy Holidays Happy Holidays Whatever, Ba Humbug

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