INWOOD, Manhattan (PIX11) — It is estimated New York City is home to about 2.5 million Hispanic and Latino people, which is about 25% of the city’s population. 

To celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, the first-ever Latin night market is taking place this weekend. 

The band Afro Dominicano is, according to the organizers of this first-ever Latin Night Market, what this special festival is all about as part of Hispanic Heritage Month. 

It was a night of bringing people who represent 21 countries and the Caribbean together in a celebration in Dyckman Plaza and Inwood Park. 

“The best part of it is seeing people eating, dancing, smiling, and enjoying themselves,” Marco Shalma, the Latin Night Market creator said. “People are feeling seen and respected.” 

Dancers from Mexico balanced trays of bottles and glasses on their heads to demonstrate a special dance from their region. 

“Sometimes it might fall, if it is not glued to your head,” Esmeralda Hidalgo, of the Ballet Folkloric de Mexicano de New York, told PIX11 News. 

Led Black, a host of the Latin Night Market, told PIX11 News “Latinos matter here in New York and elsewhere. We are a big voting bloc, and we need to be respected and treated like everyone else.” 

Latin Night Market’s food was to die for.  

Humos’s Venezuelan smoking grill offered many different types of meat and sausages and cheese-filled arepas. 

Perros’s Mexican offered street sausages, non-alcoholic pina coladas, and spicy nacho fries, to name just a few. 

“It’s a blend of spices and it’s really good,” Zach Lyons of Washington Heights said. 

Organizers are hoping this Latin Night Market will become a regular monthly event starting next year.