Vendy Plaza: A Hidden Gem
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As you well know, we at FlashPepper are solution people, so combine boredom on a rainy Sunday with our crazy family foodie lifestyle and we find ourselves in East Harlem at Vendy Plaza. Vendy Plaza is a hidden gem located under the el in East Harlem (once known as Spanish Harlem or El Barrio) between Fifth Avenue and the East River from 96th to 142st. Within El Barrio is “La Marqueta” the marketplace and oh what a marketplace it is.
Vendy Plaza calls themselves…an outdoor market series that brings together Vendy Award finalists and emerging local food vendors.
The Vendy Awards, from their website: The Vendy Awards is an established event that brings out thousands of food-savvy guests and attracts local, national, and international media attention. It’s a street food competition that determines the best of the best in street food by those attending the awards. The Vendy Awards have been at it for twelve years and are always looking for corporate sponsors to keep them going, full disclosure FlashPepper is now proud to be one of them. They sell thousands of tickets to those who want to eat, meet a few celebrity judges and support the Street Vendor Project which gets some of its funding from the event.
The Street Vendor Project is a membership based project with upwards of 2000 vendor members. It’s their mission to ensure that the nearly 20,000 street vendors in New York City are aware of their legal rights and responsibilities, assure their voices are heard, and invest in public awareness about these vendors and their contributions to the city. As part of the Urban Justice Center, the Street Vendor Project has access to its legal representation and advocacy.
We started by saying that we at FlashPepper are solution people. We believe that many of the best solutions often come from interconnection. Vendy Plaza is the end result of the Vendy Awards, the Street Vendor Project and the revitalization of La Marqueta within El Barrio all coming together to pool and highlight their resources and bring you some damn good food.
When you find a hidden gem you may be tempted to keep it to yourself – not so with Vendy Plaza. The more people who come to enjoy the food and music each Sunday the more good can be done for the Street Vendor Project and the neighborhood.
If you’re interested in vending at Vendy Plaza, with support from Speaker Melissa Mark Viverito, all spots are free of charge. Yes you read that right. If you’re looking for an outlet to distribute your food product you can apply HERE.
If you simply want to enjoy a Sunday afternoon filled with food, music, and neighborhood ambiance head to this Yelp five star delight and you will not be disappointed. And spread the word to pay your good time at Vendy Plaza forward.