Most of our public events usually take place late summer through fall for Latin Music Month & Hispanic Heritage Month so please check back periodically for updates.
Join our mailing list to be kept informed of the upcoming Street Co-Naming "RALPH MERCADO WAY" (see below), other events & opportunities to be involved.
We invite you to join us for this MOMENTOUS occasion located right on the block where RALPH MERCADO grew up ... the block between Smith & Boerum on Pacific.
According to his mother, Manuela Ayala, (aka "Tiny &/or Tita" depending who you were to her) they moved into the building on Pacific Street (a couple in from the corner of Boerum Place) on the day before Pearl Harbor. Ralph was just an infant of almost 2 1/2 months old. This was the only place he lived until he started a family of his own at the age of 19. He and his young bride took an apartment a short commute away ... in a building across the street. Family was everything to them and staying close was important, especially for the much needed support as young new parents.
Pacific between Smith & Boerum served as the "headquarters" of his budding career in the music business. Down the block towards Smith was the first basement party. Back up towards Boerum, the viejos gathered and played Dominos on folding tables set up the on sidewalk, fumando cigarros y tomando sus cevcitas. Ralph and his brothers and cousins played stickball and other games on the street. They played hide and seek between the cars, doorways and stoops. And years later their kids did the same.
That 4th Floor walk-up was a refuge of sorts. It was home for many family gatherings, Dia De Los Reyes rosario events, and headquarters for his mom's bookie business. Tiny (as Ralph called her) stayed living in that apartment well into her 80's until the day she passed. His sister Angelica (aka "Jelly") was the doting daughter who lived right above, checking in on her everyday.
This "RALPH MERCADO WAY" Street Co-Naming celebration will be marked with family, friends and members of the community along with special guests and performances. There will be music, dancing, activities and food trucks with delicious Latin fare for the public to enjoy.
Please join the Mailing List to keep posted on this event.
We look forward to seeing you there!