It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas — in Hialeah. This Saturday kicks off the inaugural Christmas Block Party in the Leah Arts District.
The event is a block party and toy drive benefiting His House Children’s Home. Expect twinkle lights, murals, music, food, swag, and tons of seasonal spirit. Of course, ugly sweaters are encouraged.
"Christmas, in many ways, is a time of giving. So we thought it would be appropriate to put together something where people could give to others," says Councilman Paul B. Hernandez, cofounder of the Leah Arts District along with local PR guru JennyLee Molina. The soiree is the kick-off to a six-month series of #HialeahNow events presented by Jameson Irish Whiskey.
"It's also a great opportunity to purchase last-minute gifts for friends and family from the many local vendors that will be present. Hosting a flea-like event is another thing that's been on our list, and many people have asked for it as well," Hernandez says.
More than 40 vendors curated by THRIFTER — including Anita Fantome, Bang Bang Jewels, Cali Style Imports, Goji Art, Martha of Miami, RoRocks, Sunstruck, and U-style28 — will sell artisan goods. There'll also be food trucks, some with vegan options, such as Che Grill, Crazydilla, HipPops, Jerk Cuisine, Taco Fresh, and Snokyo, and music by Sharpsound, DZA, Aliyo.
Attendees are encouraged to bring toys for His House Children's Home, though gift cards are most welcome because they provide basic needs for the foster kids. The first 50 people to give a gift card will score a #HialeahNow T-shirt.
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"I had done some work with His House a long time ago, but His House has been a constant pillar of charity to this community that has changed the lives of countless children for over 25 years," Hernandez says of the partnership.
"We hope to establish many partnerships with different charities throughout Hialeah and South Florida as time goes by," he adds. "One thing is certain: We are only going to work with charities that we trust will make good on dedicating the proceeds to where they're actually intended to go. We aren't interested in helping with executive salaries or wasteful promotions. We want to make a difference."
Hialeah Christmas Block Party
Saturday, December 17, from 3 to 8 p.m. in the Leah Arts District, 1501 E. Tenth Ave., Hialeah. Admission is free, but RSVP is required. Visit hialeahnow.eventbrite.com.