Crowds Return To Roosevelt Row On First Friday In April

By Vaughan Jones
Published: Saturday, April 3, 2021 - 4:35pm
Updated: Monday, April 19, 2021 - 11:24am

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Justin Stabley/KJZZ
Various vendor booths during First Friday in 2019.

After a yearlong hiatus, artists, performers, vendors and hundreds of people have returned to downtown Phoenix for First Friday.

But it wasn’t the official reopening of the monthly event. Chris “Stone” Daniel, who sits on the committee for Roosevelt Row and performs at First Friday every month, says the event will slowly start to expand in the coming months.

“First Friday isn’t fully official until you see the barricades, and we’ve got streets blocked off. But they’re gonna do it street by street instead of just opening it out, full blast,” said Daniel.

Daniel says Gov. Doug Ducey’s removal of COVID-19 safety protocols allowed for pieces of Roosevelt Row to open for First Friday.

Despite the unofficial label, many vendors came out to greet their largest crowd in months.

David, who only gave his first name, is the owner and founder of Amigos Horchata. He says his return to First Friday comes as more than just a chance to make money.

“It’s fun to serve, and, like I said, even though you think it’s just drinks, but it just feels good to have something put a smile on people’s face, not only that but we get something from it as well, just the whole vibe out here is real dope,” said David.

He says Amigos got by with government assistance and recently started to return to smaller farmers’ markets but anticipates seeing most of his business from First Fridays in the future as the event continues to grow.

EDITOR'S NOTE: The headline has been updated to more accurately reflect the story. 

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