Residents Celebrate Local Icon
Fox Point neighbors were no doubt disappointed to see papered windows on Friends Market, the Portugese market and neighborhood mainstay that, like some other local businesses, closed temporarily in 2020 due to the coronavirus. But many were surprised and delighted to see the storefront light up briefly this past November for a boisterous birthday celebration. Manual Pedroso, owner of the store for almost 70 years, had turned 101—prompting neighbors and family members to mark the occasion with balloons, huge posters, old photographs, and an outdoor caravan-parade.
“Having a store in Fox Point, you ended up being a cultural broker,” Eileen Pedroso Afonso, Pedroso’s daughter, told the Providence Journal. “My father’s was one of the first Portuguese stores, and it made you feel at home, as if you were still in Portugal.” Indeed this party not only celebrated a neighborhood icon, but brightened a difficult year.
Image, Amy Mendillo