As summer winds down, the Fresh Pond Road street festival gives Ridgewood residents one more shot at enjoying some carnival-themed fun this season.
Sponsored by the Federazione Italo-Americana di Brooklyn and Queens, the two-day affair takes place the weekend of Sept. 8-9 along Fresh Pond Road between Menahan and Palmetto Streets. Thousands of people from Ridgewood and surrounding communities are expected to attend.
Visitors can expect to find an array of music, games, rides and food vendors along the four-block stretch. A portion of the proceeds go toward the federazione’s charitable efforts in the community.
Festival hours are from 2 to 10 p.m. on Saturday and 3 to 9 p.m. on Sunday. Fresh Pond Road, of course, will be closed to vehicular traffic during those periods, and drivers will be detoured to neighboring side streets including Forest Avenue.
Additionally, residents can expect to find parking restrictions along Fresh Pond Road in the days leading up to the festival as vendors begin setting up shop.
It’s the third straight year that the Fresh Pond Road festival will run over two days; in previous years, it operated on four consecutive days, Thursday through Sunday, usually on the first weekend after Labor Day.
The festival had been a source of controversy in recent years amid complaints from Ridgewood residents about traffic congestion, lost parking spots and even occasional violence. Back in 2015, Community Board 5 recommended rejection of a four-day street activity permit for the festival’s organizers for those reasons; the city, however, granted the organizers the four-day permit.
In 2016, however, the city decided to reduce the festival’s permit from four to two days. The of construction of the nearby overpass carrying Fresh Pond Road and Metropolitan Avenue above the Long Island Rail Road’s Montauk branch was said to have played a key role in that decision.