Thousands of visitors are expected to pack Grant Avenue in San Francisco’s Chinatown this Friday and Saturday as the city’s latest night market opens ahead of next week’s Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit.
The Chinatown night market, built on the momentum of the moon festival pilot program and the highly successful Sunset Night Market, both of which happened in September. It aims to showcase Chinatown’s food scene and its thriving culture—especially for an audience of international travelers coming into the city in droves.
Jonathan Sit, a volunteer with BeChinatown, which organizes the event, said that 99% of the vendors are Chinatown’s own restaurants, and there will be lots of fun things to do besides eating. Last time, in addition to food, the Chinatown Night market had booths for calligraphy, mahjong and chopstick games.
Some 25 vendors will take over a two-block stretch of Grant Avenue, from Pine to Sacramento streets.
Henry Chen, the owner of AA Bakery, a participating business, said his booth will sell all sorts of pastries, including egg tarts. He will also make mochi desserts and decorate cupcakes as a performance.
“It’s the safest time in San Francisco now because of APEC,” Chen said. “We hope everyone will come to Chinatown and have some fun.”
APEC is expected to bring thousands of law enforcement officers, led by the U.S. Secret Service, to the city.
Other vendors will provide boba tea, cookies and prepackaged Chinese food, such as dim sum, chow mein and spring rolls. There will be no on-site cooking, but as nearly all the restaurants are nearby, they can deliver fresh-cooked and boxed items to the market.
The only non-food vendor is the Chinese Community Health Plan. A representative told The Standard that the organization will be there to answer residents’ health insurance questions.
Notably, there will be no cash or card transactions at the night market. Sit said two booths on each end of the market will sell $5 vouchers for visitors to purchase food.
🗓️ Friday and Saturday | 5-9 p.m.
📍 Grant Avenue between Pine and Sacramento streets
Han Li can be reached at email@example.com