‘Mercado’ Highlights Cinco De Mayo With Color, Culture, Cuisine

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By John Miller-Posted: May 6, 2022

Downtown Merced was flooded with residents for the Cinco de Mayo themed Mercado Night on May 5, 2022.

Downtown Merced was flooded with residents for the Cinco de Mayo themed Mercado Night last Thursday evening.
The festive atmosphere was accented by a number of traditional dance groups including Grupo Folklorico Juan Colorado de Planada, Ballet Folklorico Vuela Colibri de Atwater, and Grupo Nuevo Imperio.

Bob Hart Square at Main and Canal streets became the center of activity. It was also the gathering point for the United Tribes of California as members started the evening with an opening prayer, followed by Native American dance.

As residents and visitors alike made their way down Main Street, they were able to interact with some 70 local vendors and community groups that lined Main Street with art, food and informational stands.

There was also a Taco Truck competition, and the People’s Choice Award went to El Taco Mas Sabrosito.

On Canal Street, artists from the Urbanists Collective displayed Aztec works at the Kreepy Kawaii gallery, while those looking to create their own art were able to do so as part of the Sketchbook Station. Meanwhile back on Main Street, Merced’s Eddie O. Rodriguez put on a live art demo at Little Oven Pizza.

Those who were unable to make it to the Mercado Night on May 5 will have another chance on July 7.

The downtown Mercado Night is organized by the Merced County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and the event welcomes residents of all ages and backgrounds. For more information on the event, residents can log onto mercedhcc.com/the-mercado/.

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Felicia Roberts took an idea gathered a few people to reached into a minority community to highlight the positive, using a minority newspaper the Central Valley Voice. Roberts was joined by her sisters Carolyn Williams, Alleashia Thomas, niece Hermonie Lynn Williams, nephew Ron Williams, cousin Jerald Lester, Jay Slaffey, Greg Savage, Tim Daniels and the late J Denise Fontaine. Each individual played an important role in the birth of the newspapers. Since, then many have stood strong behind the success of the newspapers and its goal to fill a void in the Central Valley community. The Central Valley Voice published their 1st issue in November 1991. Its purposed was to highlight the achievements of minorities in the Central Valley. The Voice focuses on the accomplishments of African Americans and Hispanics giving young people role models while diminishing the stereotypical pictures of gangs, crime and violence that permeate the minority communities. Since 1991, the Central Valley Voice has provided an important voice for the minority community throughout the Madera, Merced. Stanislaus and San Joaquin counties.

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