If you've been torn over whether to buy that super-kitschy-yet-maybe-(?)-overpriced $279 Tin Tin figurine you see every week at the Brooklyn Flea which you just KNOW would tie your 249-square-foot apartment together, perhaps you should hold off another week. On Saturday, April 6th (that's next Saturday), the Fourth Arts Block is hosting Load Out!, where you'll have the chance to haul away East Village theaters' costumes, props and set pieces, all for free. Take that, BK Flea stall attendant who "could do the Tin Tin statue for $249, I guess."
The bi-annual Load Out! began in 2010 as a way for Fourth Street theaters to recycle the detritus of their productions without heading to the landfill. Furniture, clothing and set pieces from the shows will all be up for grabs. The public is invited to both donate and peruse items at the event, which will happen in the vacant lot at 19 East 3rd Street between Bowery and Second Avenue from 12 to 3 p.m.
"A lot of our members, which are primarily theaters and cultural groups, were loading out sets and props after their seasons into dumpsters — which means they would go straight to landfill," Hannah Krafcik, Fourth Arts Block's Marketing and Development Associate told us. "Since the program began," she said, "more than 43 tons have been diverted from the waste stream.
Entry is free for artists and art students, and $5 for everyone else (so put on your paint-splattered shoes and looks of angst before you get to the door). Still, $5 is a small price to pay for getting to haul away as much sweet theater refuse as you can, all free of charge.
Last year, shoppers picked up everything from a t-shirt gun to Wonder Woman cake tins to vintage bikes, furniture and housewares. There's no telling what will turn up at next week's event, but recent Fourth Street productions include LaMama's "Fever" and Metropolitan Playhouse's "The Detour" — so maybe expect some oversized thermometers and vintage street signs?
If you want to donate to the open collections, Fourth Arts Block has a list of desired items on their website. And if you'd like to donate furniture to the cause, they'll even come pick it up for you if you email firstname.lastname@example.org. It's not often you can get something for free in this city without waiting in insane lines at the behest of a corporation or possibly getting Craigslist-murdered, so make sure to get there early and happy rummaging!