FINALLY: You no longer have to crawl up to the played-out streets of Williamsburg to grab a few zines, some artisanal beef jerky, and an old G.G. Allin & The Murder Junkies album as you transfer from the L to the G train. Last week an abandoned subway newsstand space in the Lorimer Street / Metropolitan Avenue station was transformed into The Newsstand, a shrewd new enterprise in a seemingly ideal location in Williamsburg. The zine scene doesn't get more underground than this.
This morning Newsstand worker Ethan Weinstock, who doubles as a Project Manager at All Day Every Day (a "creative production company") took us on a tour of the establishment, which sells an eclectic selection of independent magazines, curated by 8 Ball Zine Fair. Weinstock told us that since opening last week, business has been brisk, and that "for every person who buys something, someone else comes in with a zine to sell."
Weinstock says they're open to accepting submissions, in part because all the zines are sold on consignment, with a large percentage of the profit going back to the artist. The store also features a zine vending machine made out of an old repurposed condom machine: "Four quarters gets you a mystery zine," Weinstock explained. During our brief tour, only one customer stopped by during the late-morning rush. She was looking for tissues. "We don't have that... yet," said Weinstock.
The Newsstand is expected to operate through the end of July, but possibly longer if business is good. In addition to the reading material, there's a selection of vintage vinyl records, bottles of cold Kombucha, bags of McClure's potato chips, Kings County beef jerky, a selection of caramel corn, and, for $30, a reusable wine bag that cleverly replicates the look of those standard-issue plastic wine bags you see everywhere. And don't worry if you don't have enough cash; starting today The Newsstand also accepts credit cards (even your parents' credit cards).
The Newsstand is open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, and on weekends from noon to 5 p.m., though this morning it didn't open until after 9:30 (hipsters!).