The Vendy Awards is an annual street food competition series that determines the “best of the best” in street food. Each year thousands of guests eagerly purchase tickets to sample food from publicly nominated vendors. The winners are chosen by event ticket holders as well as a panel of celebrity judges that includes chefs, television personalities and city officials.
Since 2005, the Vendy Awards has spread from a small garage in the East Village to some of New York City’s largest open spaces as well as other destinations across the United States, including Philadelphia, Los Angeles, and Chicago.
The Vendy Awards also serves as a fundraiser for the Street Vendor Project, a membership-based non-profit organization that stands up for vendors’ rights. The Street Vendor Project’s most recent campaign resulted in lowered fines for non health-related infractions, such as having a cart or stand too close to a curb or street.