For 26 years, the Minneapolis Urban League's annual Family Day event has united a community bruised by violence on the city's north side.
On Saturday, organizers sought to continue that mission with a free street festival on the corner of N. Penn and N. Plymouth Avenues. From 12 to 8 p.m., the block was transformed into an urban marketplace and resource fair for health, employment and housing tips. Family Day, launched in 1989, promotes family traditions and values, healthy and secure neighborhoods and economic development.
Live music from Grammy award-winning artists and other local performers, such as the Brooklyn Park Lions Drum and Bugle Corp, provided entertainment throughout the day, while children were kept occupied by bouncy houses and pony rides. A slew of cuisines from food trucks and stands among the informational booths fed the crowd that has grown to more than 1,000 in recent years.
The Urban League is a nonprofit that advocates for the economic prosperity and social rights of minorities. Vendors at the event help dissiminate information about college scholarships, athletic programs and extra curricular activities to keep teens off the street.