Fieldnote 14 Sep. 2012

Latino festival: we found parking downtown. As we approached near the court house, we could hear Spanish over the amplified sound system. Yes, here we would practice, and see how much Lexington. or Mexington, gave the feeling of the one the barrios of NYC. We weren’t expecting Jackson Heights, of course, but I was hoping to see a small market, listen to some music, and of course try some food. What I found was nothing surprising. The only vendors were those who already own businesses in the area. The food vendors, for example, all set up small stalls that sold food from their restaurants. This was more or less like the festivals that took place on 116th, that is, only those who had permits, or the legitimate means (money) to afford a space purchased one.

The music was Brazilian. There was some sambas. S said that the Portuguese spoken was heavily English-inflected. S and I walked around, and didn’t run into anyone we know, besides Andres, the newspaper journalist who helped to organize the event. He was photographing candid shots of both those who attended, and those who performed. We shook hands, he told me to head over to a club after the events for a big party. There would be mariachis and 100 shots at midnight. I said thanks, but this wasn’t the type of fieldwork I felt like for this night.

Many Latinos out, especially young families. There weren’t as many Latinos as I think folks of different ethnicities. I believe Friday evenings in Lexington are not primary locations attracting Latinos in the area. I will be interested to see what the demographics tomorrow will look like .

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