ARCADIA, Calif. – The 626 Night Market at the Santa Anita Park, a huge food and entertainment festival in San Gabriel Valley, attracted thousands of attendees this weekend. The people navigated the 200 plus food merchandise, crafts, arts, games, music, and entertainment attractions in this event that appealed to all ages.
The 626 Night Market housed the wide array of local Asian businesses and young entrepreneurs who promoted their businesses, products, and services. Restaurant foods, Live DJs, performance artists, and family-themed games were all on display in Santa Anita’s Infield over the weekend.
Night markets or night bazaars are street markets which operate at night and are generally dedicated to more leisurely strolling, shopping, and eating than more businesslike day markets. They are typically open-air markets.
Inspired by its popularity in Asia, the founder, Mr. John Hwang, brought the night market idea to America, so people could gather, socialize, and explore different local food and culture. The 626 area code of San Gabriel country, East Los Angeles, inspired the name of the festival. The first 626 Night Market began in 2012, and this weekend’s event marked its third anniversary.
According to Hwang, there were really three components behind the success of the 626 Night Market: community, commerce, and culture.
- For community, the night market event was something that people from all ages and from all cities could come and enjoy the weekend.
- For commerce, the support of the local entrepreneurs and businesses was overwhelming. Many of the vendors were first time entrepreneurs, and this was really a low-cost way for expansion.
- Moreover, for culture, this was a way to bring a little bit of Asia to the Los Angeles area and expose it to a larger audience.
626 Night Market in Santa Anita is the original and largest theme night market in the America. The Los Angeles Times reported that the 626 Night Market is the biggest food event in San Gabriel Valley.
The next 626 Night Market will be on Oct. 10-14, 2014, at the Orange County Fair and Event Center in Costa Mesa, Calif.
© 2014 Joe Quintana