By Jessica Oliveira
Last Thursday I had the pleasure of attending my first “1st Thursday” on State Street. Despite the cold weather, there was still a very large turn out of locals and visitors wandering around the shops and venues. Music filled the streets of State with every step you took. My first stop was in Paseo Nuevo where visitors of all ages lined up for temporary air tattoos. The friendly artists were very experienced and quickly delivered these free colorful pieces of wearable art.
My next stop was listening to a young lady play a beautifully painted and colorful piano. A large crowd grouped around the cheerful music to listen.
“I’ve been working on State Street for a couple years, and it is always my favorite time of the month when I get to catch the 1st Thursday performances before my shift starts,” says Stefanie Balmonoukian, who works at the restaurant Blush. “Being able to listen to the music while walking to work is a great start to my shift, it is also a very touching time to see the community gather to share the sweet sounds of music travel through the street.”
My next stop was in front of Marshalls, where a local band called “Kalinka” played a blend of music with Jewish klezmer tunes, popular gypsy songs, vintage jazz, French café music, Israeli, and Eastern European melodies. The music was very fun to listen to, and it even got a group of listeners dancing along.My final stop was at the Prince & Fairy Art Contest in Paseo Nuevo, where kids ages 6-10 were creating holiday masterpieces to be entered in a contest to be in the holiday parade with Santa. Children created dozens of colorful and glittery pictures as they listened to a group of children play drums near by. I look forward to December’s 1st Thursday next month!