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Midnight Market Food Festival partners with nonprofit Rising Tide Capital for their annual celebration of Entrepreneurship.

Esther Fraser
October 25, 2017

On November 2 at Harborside, Rising Tide Capital with RISE to Expand Opportunity

Last winter, chef Alysis Vasquez and her best friend Perla Nieves, a marketing expert, dreamed up an event for the young and young at heart in Jersey City. What if, they thought, there was an indoor market, that could bring together some of the best street food in New Jersey? What if there was a low cover charge, with low prices for small bites of food? With great music. At a place that was easily accessible by multiple forms of public transport.

Midnight Market was born.  

At first the event was conceived as a monthly market. But several thousands of guests later, some pretty impressive press, and a vendor list that includes an eclectic, international mix of food–from sweet to savory, from different takes on old favorites, to brand new culinary treats–and the phones started ringing. Jersey City organizations like the Liberty Science Center, The Beacon wanted to partner with Midnight Market.     

One of those phone calls was from Rising Tide Capital’s (RTC) CEO Alfa Demmellash. Six years ago, the nonprofit organization started producing an annual fundraising gala, but this year they were looking to do something different.

“We’ve always wanted to host an event that didn’t feel like a typical sit down dinner,” she said. “Our gala is always a celebration of our community–partnering organizations, funders and investors, and of  course our incredible network of entrepreneurs. What better way to celebrate our mission to transform lives and communities through entrepreneurship than to produce a fun yet meaningful event with our entrepreneurs?”

“Having  RTC in my corner to ease the growing pains of a small business was invaluable,” said Vasquez, who is a graduate of the organization’s nationally-recognized Community Business Academy. “To pay it forward, Midnight Market’s mission is to create a space where other entrepreneurs can succeed and connect with the community. It only makes sense to combine forces with RTC and support the small business community.”

Together Lisi and Perla have curated a menu that features nine food vendors including four other graduates of the Community Business Academy.

The event, titled “RISE To Expand Opportunity” will take place on November 2 at the original home of Midnight Market, Harborside Plaza 3 Atrium, located at 34 Exchange Place in Jersey City from 6:30 to 10 PM. Proceeds of the event will benefit RTC’s programs in 2018.

RISE differs from the typical Midnight Market event in one significant way. Instead of paying individual vendors for food  and drinks, for this event, patrons pay one flat charge that covers their choice of food from six of the food vendors, as well as an open bar.


If you’d like to attend RISE to Expand Opportunity, use this link to purchase tickets Tickets start at $75 but if you use the coupon code “midnight” on Thursday October 26, you can buy as many tickets as you like for $49.