Oakland welcomes back First Fridays following pandemic

Bay Area

OAKLAND, Calif. (KRON) – For the first time since the pandemic began, Oakland’s First Fridays are back.

The nighttime community event kicked off Friday night with a number of vendors serving up food and selling local goods.

Bringing people together is what this event is all about.

The COVID-19 pandemic has kept people away from gathering here along Telegraph Avenue but now it’s getting a really welcomed return.

It’s been more than 18 months but the Friday night party is back in Oakland.

It returns with dozens of vendors serving up hot and tasty food and t-shirts, hats, and other clothing representing “The Town.”

This event is a big boost for the area’s small businesses.

The COVID-19 pandemic forced many of them to struggle and temporarily pulled the plug on the Telegraph Avenue street fest.

Business owners are really glad to have it back.

First Fridays not only help the local economy but it brings together the community. Event-goers say it’s important to show support.

The return of First Fridays hit a few snags before getting to this point. Permitting and security fees created some complications and kept the event from starting back up last summer.

A corporate sponsorship stepped in to help with settling some of those issues but costs aside, organizers are eager to keep First Fridays alive.

It will be happening the first Friday of every month from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. and masks, for now, are strongly encouraged.

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