Friday Night Market gives residents a new way to welcome in the weekend

The sound of indie rock music and mouthwatering scents from multiple food vendors filled the air as hundreds gathered in the United Nations Plaza in preparation for a new twist on a Friday night entertainment.

Patrons at the first Friday Night Market in the United Nations Plaza. Helen Tinna / Xpress.

Patrons at the first Friday Night Market in the United Nations Plaza. Helen Tinna / Xpress.

The first Friday of September marked the opening night of the new must-do event of the weekend, the Friday Night Market in downtown San Francisco. The Market features a plethora of food trucks, 45 indie vendors, live musical performances by local artists and a sizable beer garden.

“Why not have fun, just have a drink and help the businesses as well,” said Nabil Hourien, an SF native enjoying himself at the beer garden.

The joint effort of community members made the Friday Night Market grow from an idea into  a reality.

“We brought  a lot of community people together to really create layers of people from the community here so it felt safe and comfortable. Sometimes UN Plaza doesn’t really feel safe or comfortable,” said Kelli Rudnick, the assistant project manager at the Department of Public Works.

Market Street is in the Tenderloin Districts’ backyard and the UN Plaza is a place where many gather and even consider their home.

Ansanelli Productions, owned by Charlie Ansanelli, in partnership with the Department of Public Works and Market Street Productions, designed the “Make Your Market” project, which has been created to help transform Market Street into a more cultural and economic place, according to the Better Market Street program website.

The website also states the overarching goal of the Friday Night Market: “To make Market Street the signature sustainable street in San Francisco and the Bay Area by creating a memorable and active identity, with gathering spaces, the ability to promenade, and a vibrant public life.”

“One of the concepts that comes up a lot around Market Street and the revitalization of Market Street is bringing that kind of activity back,” Rudnick said.

Rosemarie Eyth has been selling and collecting vintage items for over 30 years. Eyth said she loves the idea of this “pop-up market, new bizarre style” of evening market.

The market runs until Oct. 24, every Friday night from 4-9 p.m. Food, activities, live music, and again, a beer garden, will be enough to keep attendees busy for hours.

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