Monday, May 23, 2011

Asian Heritage Street Celebration 1: Tiaras and Police Cadets

The 7th annual Asian Street Celebration took place Saturday in the Little Saigon area of Larkin Street, and the balloon approximation of this year's logo was having a hard time staying aloft in the neighborhood's cold springtime winds.

The event was started by the Fang Family and their AsianWeek magazine, moving about from one predominantly Asian San Francisco neighborhood to another, but the Larkin Street area near Civic Center has seemingly become the permanent location of this "Street Celebration."

As is usual with Asian-American events in San Francisco (and elsewhere for all I know), there were plenty of tiaras resting on the heads of titleholders in evidence.

There were also a lot of organizations recruiting new members, such as the ROTC-style Police Cadets above and the actual San Francisco Police Department, which until fairly recently was very much an all-white boys' club.

Read the "historical essay" by Kevin J. Mullen here at the FoundSF website for a glimpse of the traditional "Chinatown Squad" during the Golden Dragon Massacre of 1977, where only about three people (including recent chief Heather Fong) even spoke Chinese in a force of thousands. (Note to Beth Spotswood: For a book-length account of the massacre, with lots of gory detail, check out the online "Bamboo Tigers" by Brockman Morris here.)

There were also a number of booths hawking Asian-themed goods...

...and Safeway was giving away groceries with various carnival type games.

The main hit of the "Street Celebration" was the food...

...although the block-long culinary area was a mob scene made more claustrophobic by the placement of food trucks directly across from the booths.

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