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Local Latino Emporium

Pop-up mercado comes to Seattle

Grace Proffitt, Staff Reporter

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As you pull up to Plaza Roberto Maestas, the smell of fresh food hits your nose as a warm breeze drifts through the air around you. The sound of chatter and energetic music fills your ears. As you step out of your car, you can already see the large gathering of people who are socializing and greeting each other with smiles in the distance.
This is the Pop Up Mercado, a quarterly market celebrating the Latino community. It began when Jake Prendez, the event coordinator, moved to the Seattle area from Los Angeles about a year ago. He noticed something that bothered him. “There weren’t any events up here targeting the Latino community or highlighting Latino artists and vendors”, he says, “we decided to create our own event”.
Since then, the Pop Up Mercado has been occurring every quarter (about every 3-4 months). Each time the event is held, the size of the Mercado grows. “We estimated over 1,000 people at our last Pop Up Mercado”, says Prendez.
This is an environment with a lot of activity. The event features DJs and performers, artisans and vendors selling their goods, and food such as tamales and pupusas. Despite the large size of the event, it retains its community atmosphere, with one of the main goals of the Mercado being to create a welcoming, festive and fun space.
Whether your interests are to gain inspiration and find unique goods or you are simply looking for a chance to have fun and learn more about a new culture, the Pop Up Mercado provides those opportunities.
The gathering also provides the chance to support local vendors and artisans. By purchasing the items at the Pop Up Mercado, customers have the ability to own pieces no one else has while simultaneously supporting members of the community who are selling their products.
The event is located at Plaza Roberto Maestas, 2524 16th Ave S, Seattle WA 98144. Everyone who is interested is welcome to come join and have fun.

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