By Paula Katinas
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Shoppers can find great bargains and help an historic old church at the same time by attending a thrift sale in Bensonhurst.
The New Utrecht Reformed Church, on 18th Avenue and 84th Street, is hosting a thrift sale on Saturday, April 13, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The church, founded in 1677, is considered a neighborhood landmark. The building is currently undergoing extensive and expensive renovations. Sunday services are held in the Parish House, a 19th Century building located on the church grounds that boasts a stained glass window designed by Tiffany and Co.
The thrift sale will take place in the Parish House. Parking is available in the church parking lot. The B8 bus stops right in front of the church. The B1 bus is two blocks away on 86th Street. The church is also located a block from the 18th Avenue subway station on the D line.
The historic church is easily identified by the "Liberty Pole" on the front lawn. The flagpole is 104 feet high and is the sixth pole erected at the site. The first “Liberty Pole” was put up by residents of the Town of New Utrecht celebrating the evacuation of the British Army in 1783.
Information about the history of the church and Brooklyn's early days is available from the group, the Friends of Historic New Utrecht. Interested parties can also call 718-256-7173 or email [email protected] for more information.
The New Utrecht Reformed Church was organized by Dutch settlers in 1677, according to the Friends website. Construction of the original church building was completed in 1700. The church originally stood on what is now 16th Avenue and 84th Street. The Old New Utrecht Cemetery, which was located next to the church, is still there today.
During the Revolutionary War, the church was used by the British as a hospital.
In 1828, the original church building was dismantled, according to historians in the Friends group. Stones from the church were used in the construction of a new church building on what is now 84th Street and 18th Avenue.