Lovers of ethnic foods, rejoice: New York's renowned Queens Night Market is officially coming back on June 19, running every Saturday through October 30.
As usual, vendors of all sorts will take over Flushing Meadows Corona Park, serving everything from Indian tandoori kebabs to Bengali fuska, Hong Kongese soy sauce noodles and Puerto Rican papas rellenos. There will still be a $5-$6 price cap on food orders, to make sure you get to eat all that's available without breaking your wallet, plus beer and wine on offer for purchase. In terms of music, you can expect live gigs to capture your attention as well.
However, unlike previous years and in an attempt to help curb the spread of COVID-19, the event will operate at reduced capacity and require timed tickets for entry. Each in-advance entry pass will cost $5 ("in order to waive vendor participation fees," explains the website) and guarantees guests a 90-minute visit. "In the event that restrictions are further loosened before we re-open, we hope to convert timed entry and attendance into general admission," reads the website. "Once the capacity restrictions have been completely lifted, the Queens Night Market will be free and open to all again."
Children under the age of 12 can still get in for free and walk-up tickets (if available) will be sold at $8 a pop.
As of now, foodies will also be required to wear masks while at the park and abide by social distancing measures. You can purchase tickets for Saturdays through the beginning of July right here.
"While we're very mindful of the gravity and tragedy of what we’re coming out of as a city, state and nation, we hope the Queens Night Market can represent a celebratory beacon of solidarity and really just a huge, collective sigh of relief," John Wang, the founder of the event, said in an official statement announcing the re-opening. "We're unbelievably excited to welcome everyone back and hope our visitors don't mind underwriting vendor fees until attendance restrictions are lifted. We just don't want to hang out vendors out to dry financially after the tough year they've had."
If you can't get to Queens or are unavailable on Saturdays, worry not. Since this past October, the staff has been operating a Queens Night Market Outpost at Rockefeller Center in midtown Manhattan. Showcasing a relatively smaller group of vendors and operating on weekdays between NOON and 6pm, the operation will stay put all through this summer.
There has clearly never been a better time to be a culinary aficionado in New York.