CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — After a one-year hiatus, crowds returned to Market After Dark, the popular nighttime farmers market in downtown Cedar Rapids.
Organizers noted that pandemic precautions included an expanded area to allow for more social distancing and encouraging attendees to walk in a one-way directional loop, but as thousands of maskless people walked the streets, queued shoulder-to-shoulder in food lines and gathered in crowds to watch live entertainment, the venue appeared almost as it looked pre-pandemic.
Attendance appeared to be down on Sept. 25, 2021, compared to the last Market After Dark in 2019, when more than 50,000 people filled the streets of downtown Cedar Rapids, but this year’s figures were not yet available.
Market After Dark was canceled in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
This year’s entertainment included Gina Owens performing country music; Tom’s Top 8, a pop-punk group, drag performers and Clife DJ Company.
More than 100 vendors offered a variety of prepared food, baked goods, produce and handcrafted items during the nighttime market, hosted by the Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance.
See photos from the last Market After Dark in 2019 and more from the 2021 event below. (photos © Cindy Hadish/Homegrown Iowan)