The Parks Department says it is no longer pursuing repayment from an event planning company whose illegal party last Sunday in Prospect Park left the historic greensward covered in trash — thanks to an apology issued by the company late last week.
The city initially had said it would seek reimbursement for the enormous clean-up effort it undertook on July 20, when dozens of paid workers and volunteers put the park back into its normally clean condition hours after the end of the MIH Ventures’ unpermitted “Heatwave” barbecue brought thousands of revelers to the park.
“Moving forward, Parks and the Prospect Park Alliance looks forward to working with [MIH Ventures] when they organize a volunteer clean-up of Prospect Park this fall,” said the spokesman, Phil Abramson. “We will also ensure that they fully comply with our rules and regulations when considering any future events at Prospect Park or any other park. In consideration of their sincere apology and their initiative in hosting a clean-up effort, no further actions will be taken.”
Abramson was referring to the statement issued by MIH Ventures on July 23, which claimed that the company was all set to clean up the mess it made, but the Parks Department got there first.
“Attendance at the event was much greater than anticipated, overwhelming our clean-up efforts,” read the statement from the Bergen Street-based event promotion company, breaking a three-day silence. “Our efforts to restore the park to its original condition extended late into the evening, but after exhausting our supplies, we decided to continue the clean-up the next day.
“When we returned with the necessary supplies and man power, the park had been cleaned,” the statement claimed.
Earlier in the week, after The Brooklyn Paper broke the story about the mounds and mounds of garbage that filled the park’s Long Meadow, the Parks Department said it would seek damages from MIH Ventures for the unpermitted event.
The statement was clearly an attempt to deflect that effort.
“We deeply regret that volunteers and park staff ultimately shouldered the responsibility of cleaning up after our event,” it said. “MIH Ventures sincerely apologizes to the community for the condition of the Park on Monday morning. We are currently working with Prospect Park to ensure that the park remains a clean and enjoyable place for all, as we too are members of the Brooklyn community who use and appreciate Prospect Park.
“To show our support for Prospect Park and our respect for the community, MIH Ventures, in conjunction with Prospect Park, is organizing a volunteer clean-up effort to take place early this fall.”
MIH Ventures worked out the agreement with Prospect Park Administrator Tupper Thomas.
“Tupper was very happy to actually speak to the organizers and work this out,” said Eugene Patron, a spokesman for the Prospect Park Alliance.