El Centro’s “Nights on Main Street” Turns into Giant Block Party

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Entertainer Patrick McMorris gives an astonishing performance spinning fire pois during El Centro’s Nights on Main Street Saturday evening.

EL CENTRO – Hundreds made their way to downtown Main Street during the Nights on Main Street event that turned one huge block into a party Saturday evening.

The event closed down Main Street 600 block, where numerous booths sold an array of goods ranging from original art work, jewelry and purses made out of can tabs, clothing, cell phones, jewelry, furniture restoration, funky wallets, body piercing, hand crafted items, food, and beer.

“My boyfriend Jimmy and I came down to begin our Valentine’s celebration here,” said Cynthia Perez. “It’s nice to spend time with him while doing a little bit of shopping, sipping on a beer and enjoying this absolutely wonderful music.”

Artist Leticia Torres displayed various items made out of can tabs that she collects and then turns into purses, necklaces, earrings, purses, cell phone cases and even clothing.

“I make everything and anything” said Torres. “I began about a year ago, and due to the high demand, I see myself working a lot more. This is my second event so far in Imperial County, and I am very happy with the outcome.”

Torres said she sells most of her handmade items in the Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York areas.

Nights on Main Street was created to revive El Centro’s Main Street downtown area and promote local businesses while giving others the opportunity to showcase their businesses.

“We’ve had a great turn out today,” said Jessica Yocupicio, one of the event coordinators. “We’ve had a lot more participants this time and it is really cool to show off all of the hidden local talent we have.”

Event Coordinator Kayla Dotson said over 60 booths participated in Saturday’s event, which included tarot card readings, music bands and fire spinning entertainment.

“We had to turn away several people who were interested in setting up booths,” said Dotson. “We’ve had a great response and hope to stretch the event all the way down Main Street and make it consistent throughout the year.”

Booths were available for a $20 fee, while non-profit and informational booths were charged a $10 fee. Live entertainment and artists who displayed their art work were given free access, however, if artists sold any of their artwork, part of the sale was paid to the organizers as commission.

Skilled entertainer Patrick McMorris gave an amazing live performance with fire pois leaving the crowd stunned with his unique ability to play with fire.

“This is the first time I’ve see this kind of performance,” said Brianna Marin. “Things that you can never imagine happen only here during the Nights on Main Street.”

Activities for children were also available like face painting and sand art.

Sponsors of the event included Odds N Ends, Shake N Wake, Camel Tow, Tiendique, La Bella Pizzeria and the Imperial Valley Young Artist Collective.

“We are hoping to bring similar events in collaboration with the Imperial Valley Artist Collective to organize events throughout the Valley,” said Yocupicio. “We are also working with Brawley’s First Fridays, and hoping to bring similar events to the cities of Imperial and Calexcio.”

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