Ninth Avenue Food Festival in Manhattan attracts large crowds, food from around the globe including India

Bombay Grill food stall at the 9th Avenue International Food Festival May 18 and 19, 2024. PHOTO: YouTube

Thousands of visitors and food enthusiasts visited New York City’s oldest and largest continuing 9th Avenue International Food Festival held in the famous Hell’s Kitchen area of Manhattan on the 9th Avenue between 57th street and 42nd street from 1:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 18 & Sunday, May 19, 2024.

Being held since 1974, the festival is reported to draw close to 500,000 visitors over the weekend. Vibrant, colorful and flavorful as the city, the festival celebrates New York City’s rich and diverse culture and food.

Famous restaurants and eateries in the neighborhood all came out of their spaces to their stalls on the 9th Avenue and offered a taste of their food. There are many ethnic restaurants in Hell’s Kitchen where one can eat food from countries including Italy, Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, the Dominical Republic, India, Ethiopia, Greece, Haiti, Ireland, Morocco, Ukraine, Japan.

At the same time, visitors also could enjoy an international variety of music and dance from far off countries like Germany, Egypt, Ireland and more. The festival also provided a chance to taste food from their favorite Westside restaurant and getting to know businesses and community organizations in the area.

The avenue which was closed both the days between 57th and 42nd streets, was lined up on both sides with food and handicraft stalls, inflated bounce tents, games of chance, and face painting.

Some of the participating restaurants included the Poseidon Bakery, Rudy’s Bar and Grill, Empanada Mama, Bombay Grill, Jasper’s Taphouse and Kitchen, Kashkaval Garden, Karahi Indian Cuisine, 5 Napkin Burger, Lovely’s Old Fashioned, The Corner Chinese Restaurant, The Molly Pitcher Club, The Westway Diner, and more.

The Bombay Grill’s festival menu included Mango Lassi, Vegetarian and Non-Vegetarian Samosas, Chai and more, and the excitement of New Yorkers who had tasted Mango Lassi could be heard by the passers by.

Like every year, the festival was organized by the Ninth Avenue Association which aims to promote individual merchants through events like this. The festival not only showcased all the merchants, but also aimed to attract people to come back after the festival was over, be it residents of the neighborhood or visitors. The Association is trying hard to create and re-build a new sense of community which has been lost over the years, and offers free space to community organizations.

Some of the organizations participating included The Litter Legion, Ryan Chelsea Clinton Community Health Center, One Community Church, the Rauschenbusch Metro Ministries Farm Project, the NYC Civic Engagement Commission and more. Their participation also provided getting to know them and the opportunities available with them.

Beside games and dance, one of the main features of the festival was music performances at the Stage on the 55th street by various artists including The Hell’s Kitchen Jazz Gang.



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