Summer Saturday nights, under the black light shadow of the New York Hall of Science the grounds of Flushing Meadows-Corona Park are transformed into a night market. Before there was Amazon.com, there were night markets in the Amazon, in Asia, in Africa and in Latin America. Want to visit all of these places in one single night? Come out to Queens.
More languages are spoken in Queens than in any other place in the world. Experts estimate that there are 800 different languages spoken here, though officially the city recognizes the 176 languages spoken by Queens public school students. Talk about your melting pots!
While you can find pretty much anything you’re looking for at a global night market—from combs to cuddly lambs to car parts—one of the biggest attractions at any night market is…the food. Famous specialty dishes are transformed into carry-out portions at reasonable prices. Every person eats like royalty at a night market. The Queens Night Market seriously rewards those who venture out on the number 7 train—2 stops from the end of the line. I stopped counting after I identified food stalls from 25 countries, too busy eating to care! There was food from Colombia, the Ukraine, Taiwan, Persia, the Philippines, Brooklyn, the list goes on and on.
Once you are fully sated after global gluttony, you can sit back and enjoy performances by local artists and musicians. Who knows, you may even be inspired to dance under the stars. Most summer Saturdays—check the schedule before you go. These folks take a six-week vacation and come back for more Autumn pleasures. Talk about civilized.