On October 13 PCDC held its 6th annual night market event along 10th and Race Streets. About 20,000 people attended this food fest. The foot traffic brought a significant financial boost for both local restaurants and Philadelphia food trucks.
Despite a chilly autumn night, Chinatown was hopping with people and cooking. The Yè Shì night market was once again the place to be for foodies. The event was produced by the Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corporation (PCDC). Modeled after the Asian tradition of open-air bazaars, the Yè Shì featured over 60 food vendors. Cuisine was multicultural: pudding stuffed mochi carrots, shrimp shumai, vegan pad thai, artisanal tater tots, matcha crème brûlée, and much, much more.
In addition to all the food, there were performances throughout the evening. The Philadelphia Suns performed a lion dance among the crowd, while on the main stage at the China Friendship Gate there were performances by DJ Ronnie D, Natalie Bi, Jason Mento, Jay Eu, L8nite and 3×8. The Chinatown Yè Shì would not have been possible without the extraordinary support from the community. Almost 100 local volunteers from Temple University, Drexel University, University of Pennsylvania, Ursinus College, Central High School, Philadelphia SUNS and many friends and families of the community came out to lend a hand. Sponsors this year include AARP, Asian Bank, Green Mountain Energy, HSBC, and Inspire.
The Yè Shì creates economic opportunities for the Chinatown commercial corridor, which is integral to this low-income community where many immigrant families work and own businesses. The night market is part of PCDC’s Main Street Program, whose purpose is to draw more visitors to Chinatown, and build capacity for local small businesses and entrepreneurs. It provides exposure for small businesses, provides job training opportunities, and connects successful participants to larger citywide venues. PCDC generates positive exposure and awareness of Philadelphia Chinatown, making it a destination for all.