Barrio Cafe's Annual Toy Drive and Car Show This Sunday: Low Riders, Toys, and Tamales

This Sunday the Veijitos Car Club of Arizona will host a car show and toy drive across the street from the Barrio Cafe in the Calle 16 neighborhood. And no, that location isn't just a potentially delicous coincidence. Barrio Cafe chef and owner Silvana Salcido Esparza is a member of the club and the restaurant is a sponsor of the annual event.

"I look at it as an opportunity to have a cross-cultural event," Esparza says. "These cars are works of art."

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The event has been a staple of the holiday season in Calle 16; previous shows have drawn attendees from all over the Valley -- attendees who Esparza says might not otherwise get to experience a low rider car show. For the James Beard Award nominated chef this is both an opportunity to share a part of her culture and do good for the community.

"It's not a gang, it's a club," Esparza says. "And it's not a car, it's art."

In addition to having the opportunity to check out some automotive works of art, the event will be a good excuse to view the murals of the Calle 16 Mural Project. Since fall of 2010 the project has allowed a number of local artists to paint murals on walls and businesses up and down the street.

Attendees are asked to bring an unwrapped toy to donate to The Children's Crisis Nursery. Located not far from the 16th Street neighborhood, the Crisis Nursery is the longest-running children's shelter in Phoenix.

Tamales from the Barrio Cafe will have tamales and menudo available for purchase.

The event starts at 11 a.m. and will be located at Edgemont and 16th Street, north of the Barrio Cafe.

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