Last Sunday I got a grand tour of the East End Street Market located along the 2800 block of Navigation Blvd. by market manager, Roy Rodriguez; the market is just east of downtown Houston. A few years back, The Greater East End Management District (GEEMD) completely revitalized Navigation Blvd by turning it into an outdoor destination space, park and event venue.
From 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on Sundays, The East End Street Market takes place: a mix of farmers, arts, crafts, packaged foods and food trucks. As I walked with the market manager through the space, I tried not to drool over hidden electric outlets, solar panels, built in public art, overhead canopies, picnic benches and two fantastic restaurants within sight – the iconic Original Ninfa’s and the family owned successors next door, El Tiempo Cantina-Navigation.
All around this amazing three block-long space are murals and other public art projects worthy of a weekend adventure. Get all the details including mural maps and an events calendar at eastendhouston.com.
This Friday and Saturday the GEEMD has partnered with Cynthia Vela to produce the first annual free comic-con, East End Comic Fan Festival. It’s free to the public, family and pet-friendly and free. Yes, I said free.
Normally, comic conventions have a very high entry fee, and much of that goes to the costs of paying for celebrity signings and photo-ops.
I asked my friend Cynthia Vela, the curating director about that.
[ngg_images source=”galleries” container_ids=”36″ display_type=”photocrati-nextgen_pro_slideshow” image_crop=”0″ image_pan=”1″ show_playback_controls=”1″ show_captions=”0″ caption_class=”caption_overlay_bottom” caption_height=”70″ aspect_ratio=”1.5″ width=”100″ width_unit=”%” transition=”fade” transition_speed=”1″ slideshow_speed=”5″ border_size=”0″ border_color=”#ffffff” ngg_triggers_display=”always” order_by=”sortorder” order_direction=”ASC” returns=”included” maximum_entity_count=”500″]“The GEEMD wanted to bring a ‘comic-con’ type event to the Esplanade and they asked me to produce the event since I do a lot of comic cons,” Vela said. “The goal is to bring a comic-esk event to the community so families who generally cannot afford to go to the bigger comic cons can attend. We wanted the focus more on an Artist Alley/Dealer vibe where the fan spends their money supporting local and other comic artists who do the comic con circuit all over the world.”
Vela assembled an amazing team to help put on this huge production that includes Roy Rodriguez, Julian Garcia, David J. Anderson, Blue 130 and Tierney Lyons.
Set your GPS to one of the aforementioned restaurants or 2800 Navigation Blvd. On Facebook; East End Comic Fan Festival, 6-10 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday.
Cohen is an artist and founder of First Saturday Arts Market and the new Market at Sawyer Yards, find him at ArtValet.com