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Rave Under the Kosciuszko Bridge: Are Illicit Parties Endangering N.Y.C.?

  • August 08, 2020

But other events, which charge for tickets, drinks or other amenities, perhaps illustrate how some people are looking to capitalize on the public’s restlessness.

Osvaldo Chance Jimenez, 44, who has helped organize underground parties in New York City in the past, said the growing number of events risked seeding future outbreaks, which would likely disproportionately affect communities of color, particularly in Brooklyn and Queens where many of the gatherings are taking place.

Mr. Jimenez has used his Instagram account, @hilovenewyork, to draw attention to what he sees as reckless behavior. He pointed to yacht parties where organizers are selling tickets for up to $100, and a requirement at a day club at the Ravel Hotel in Long Island City, Queens, that guests pay between $35 and $50 to take a rapid coronavirus test on site, as examples of what he called “vulture capitalism.”

“It is the arrogance of money,” he said. “These people do not care.”

Lauren Flax, a D.J., producer and artist based in Brooklyn, said people should not be partying yet. Ms. Flax has lost work and is living off unemployment checks and other government assistance. But she said that even thinking about holding a dance party would be irresponsible before there was a better understanding of the virus and better testing technology.

“I don’t think any of us should be thinking about our career right now,” she said.

Asked this week about the rave under the Kosciuszko Bridge, and an illegal boat party with more than 170 guests that was held over the weekend, Mayor Bill de Blasio said the authorities had moved quickly to address a few cases of wrongdoing and that most people were following the rules.

“But where we see something wrong, we got to go in and stop it immediately,” the mayor said.

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