It’s colorful. It’s fun. It’s artsy. It’s both hip and cool. It’s annual. It’s El Paso.
It’s Chalk the Block, and it’s a truly unique El Paso experience.
Every year, the streets of downtown El Paso are blocked off, people armed with multicolored chunks of chalk and knee-pads arrive, and sidewalks and streets are turned into a canvas for the creative endeavors of artists both local and from out of town. The epicenter of this annual happening is the historic San Jacinto Plaza, also known in times past as Plaza de los Lagartos (Alligator Plaza). Vendors abound. Savory smells waft into the air, carried aloft by smoke from charcoal- and gas-fueled grills. Artists who use more traditional media sell their wares from tented kiosks. Professional “graffiti” artists apply their talents to city mass transit buses that are made available as additional ‘canvases.”
It you aren’t having fun here, amid all this color and cacophony, then you’re actively fighting it. Charge your batteries, stow some extra memory cards, and bring a digital camera . . . or two. You’re going to need ’em: