Oakland First Fridays

On the first Friday of each month, the nonprofit group KONO sponsors a big block party in Oakland. In the heart of the Koreatown Northgate (KONO) district, street artists, jesters, performers, musicians, dancers, DJ’s, and vendors gather to celebrate diversity and community. Five blocks, closed to traffic, vibrate with artistic, cultural energy. As a photographer, I relish events where I can cross cultural boundaries and participate in urban revelry. As I immerse myself in the crowd, I feel enlivened by the joy of my community. My camera provides an entranceway to observe and participate. It’s okay to take photos at events such as this; people expect it, no one objects. As I took these photos, I felt elated to be an Oaklander.

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