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Become a Vendor @ La Marqueta Retoña!!!

<title="Application" href="http://lamarquetaretona.com/La_Marqueta_Application.pdf" target="_blank">Download the application here.

More than a market: Shoppers, vendors see La Marqueta as a sign of rebirth in East Harlem


Guacamole topped with fish roe. Empanadas filled with Neapolitan ice cream. Tourists and locals alike enjoyed untraditional dishes in the historic setting Sunday at La Marqueta in East Harlem.

The open-air market -- open for its second season after a $3 million commitment last year by the City Council -- represents a rebirth for the community, vendors and visitors said.

"The neighborhood is growing little by little, and we're starting to promote it more," said Nestor Leon Fortanel, owner of El Kallejon restaurant, which had a stand near the market entrance.

The plaza under the Metro-North train tracks near East 116th Street and Park Avenue opened as a food market in the 1930s and flourished for a time before declining in recent decades.

Last August, City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, who represents the area, announced a $3 million commitment toward the plaza's infrastructure. It was dubbed Vendy Plaza after the Vendy Awards street-food competition that curates the rotation of culinary offerings. The neighborhood was rebuilding; La Marqueta is just down the street from the site of the deadly March 2014 building collapse.

"It's creating a sense of community, allowing the community to come together and celebrate," said Mark-Viverito (D-East Harlem), who sat down for conversation with neighbors and a drink from a fresh coconut while Latin music blared. She said the market "reflects our great diversity."

Employees of CoCo & Co, which also has a mobile stand that travels around Central Park, the Brooklyn Bridge and other tourist-heavy spots, said they like serving locals at La Marqueta.

"So many people are brought together in such a peaceful and friendly way," Marki Vallejo said. "It's not only good for the customers; it's good for the vendors, too. Normally, it's a rivalry. Here, we're working together."

Orley Pacheco, of the Lower East Side, stumbled upon the market as he was out in the neighborhood to celebrate his mother Rosa's birthday.

"It's an infusion of what the community has to offer to the city," he said.

Trombeatz w pleaneros geno el billetero is back!

Vendy Plaza



Become a Vendor @ La Marqueta Retoña!!! 

<title="Application" href="http://lamarquetaretona.com/La_Marqueta_Application.pdf" target="_blank">Download the application here.


About LA Marqueta Retoña

La Marqueta Retoña is an initiative to revive the social and cultural elements of this historical site through the arts, music and community activities.  A series of events are scheduled to take place at the outdoor space known as "La Placita" as well as in the main indoor space of La Marqueta both located underneath the Park Avenue elevated train station between 115th and 116th Streets in El Barrio with aim to celebrate Latin culture, educate and instill a scence pride in the next generation of residence living in El Barrio.

The neighborhood of Spanish Harlem, also known as East Harlem covers the area between Fifth Avenue and the East River from 96th to 142nd St. Today the population is quite diverse, but if one were to walk these streets in the 1930’s they would find themselves immersed in a thriving Puerto Rican neighborhood, which they affectionately called “El Barrio.”

One of the most historically and culturally important and relevant sites in El Barrio is the traditional market place known as "La Marqueta."  It has always been an integral part of El Barrio’s identity and social activity.  La Marqueta is located under the elevated Metro North railway tracks between 111th Street and 116th Street on Park Avenue in East Harlem, uptown Manhattan.  In its heyday in the 1950’s and 1960’s over 500 vendors operated out of La Marqueta, which served as an important social and economic venue for all Hispanics living in New York City.  The market was originally an informal gathering place for pushcart vendors and other merchants.  In 1936 it was officially sanctioned and vendors began to rent their stalls from the city.  The New York Times once called it "the most visible symbol of the neighborhood."

Commercial and social activity at La Marqueta has significantly dwindled over the years, mainly due to the widespread availability of the traditional and specialty products that were once only to be found from vendors located at La Marqueta.  A new revitalization of La Marqueta is currently developing in tune with the cultural and economic shifts occurring in El Barrio and its surrounding neighborhoods.

  • web, logo & flyers by: WorldwideUnderGround.com

    JP Eaglin
  • fotografía: josejimeneztirado.com

    José Jiménez-Tirado Photography
  • produced by: La Respuesta

    Jose Morales
  • Supported by: NYC Council Speaker

    Melissa Mark-Viverito in collaboration with Acacia Network