A free festival celebrating Chinatown and its community takes place this weekend

September 29, 2022

Image courtesy of Wes Hicks on Unsplash

A new festival celebrating Chinatown is coming to Lower Manhattan. Hosted by the neighborhood advocacy group Welcome to Chinatown, the 88 East Fair aims to bring business and appreciation to Chinatown’s businesses and cultural institutions that have been impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. Held at the East Broadway Mall at 88 East Broadway, the fair will run on September 30 and October 1 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

The East Broadway Mall was selected as the hub for the festival because of its significance to the community. The mall has been at risk of closing due to the effects of gentrification.

There will be plenty of food options at the festival, offered by some of the neighborhood’s most iconic restaurants and vendors. Dining options include BBQ skewers, rice noodles, cakes, and more.

Besides delicious food, there will be a vast selection of activities for guests of all ages to participate in, including tournaments, games, and immersive experiences.

There will be a Chinatown scavenger hunt, in which participants will travel through the neighborhood in an effort to win prizes while becoming more familiar with the area.

To participate in the scavenger hunt, guests will pick up a card at the fair, complete certain actions and tasks around the neighborhood to collect points, and exchange them for prizes at the rewards marketplace, according to Welcome to Chinatown’s website.

Festival goers can learn about what it really means to run a small business in Chinatown at the Behind the Counter exhibit. The exhibit includes image projections, audio interviews, and artifacts, according to Time Out NY.

88 East will also include an Artist’s Alley–a designated space for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) to showcase their art.

Food Mahjong Club will be hosting its third mahjong tournament. There will be lessons held an hour before the tournament at 88 Palace for those who need to sharpen their skills. Entry is $50 a person.

More activities will be announced in the coming days.


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