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Peace Corps Week/International Women's Day Celebration

08 Mar 2024
6:00pm - 9:00pm EST

Join fellow RPCVs, family, and friends to celebrate Peace Corps Week & International Women's Day at the Downtown West Side Bazaar on March 8th!

There are three women-owned food kiosks and two retail shops.  Food includes Ethiopian, Sudanese, Mexican, Burmese and a bar. 


Location: 617 Main Street, Buffalo, NY 14203

Time: 6 PM

Parking on Washington St. M&T parking lot. 


Restaurants in Downtown Bazaar


Abyssinia Ethiopian Cuisine

Owner: Zelalem Gemmeda Journey: Ethiopia to Yemen to Buffalo (Arr. 2005) Established in 2012 in WEDI's West Side Bazaar Zelalem Gemmeda was born and raised in Ethiopia but relocated to a refugee camp in Yemen due to political unrest. During her 12 years in Yemen, she learned Arabic and worked at a restaurant. Eventually, she was able to purchase and own a restaurant, a rare achievement for a woman in Yemen but she and her husband had to leave for the U.S. She opened Abyssinia Ethiopian Cuisine where she proudly serves authentic Ethiopian cuisine using spices sourced from Ethiopia. Her dishes are meant to be eaten with your hands and the food is particularly popular with vegans. Zelalem said she likes owning her business because she feels connected and involved with the community. She hopes to graduate from the West Side Bazaar and serve dishes on traditional clay plates from her birth country. You’ll often find her husband G. and their daughter Feben working with her at the restaurant.


Flavia's Business

Owner: Flavia Mutoni Established in 2021 in WEDI's West Side Bazaar Flavia’s goal is to bring quality African, Middle Eastern, and Asian clothing to her family and friends here in the US. Flavia personally selects the clothing, purses, bags, and decorative items she imports to ensure they are of the best quality. She also makes and sells braids and decorative hair pieces. Flavia speaks 6 different languages which allow her to communicate more efficiently with the growing immigrant and refugee community in the Greater Buffalo Area.



Owner: Jess Melisz Established in 2023 at WEDI's Downtown Bazaar Owner/Chef Jessica Melisz is a Buffalo native with 24 years in the hospitality industry. Chef Jess was fortunate to spend a number of years living in central Texas where her appreciation of Mexican food only grew. When the decision was made to move back to Buffalo it became clear that she wanted to bring the flavors of northern Mexico, El Paso, Corpus Christi, Austin, and New Mexico back with her. Finally, bringing her dream to fruition and honoring her main influence by naming her business after her, Oralia has come to Buffalo!


Pattaya Street Food

Owner: Elizabeth Sher Journey: Burma/Myanmar to Thailand to Buffalo (Arr. 2011) Established in 2018 in WEDI's West Side Bazaar Originally from the Karen state in Burma/Myanmar, Elizabeth lived in a refugee camp in Thailand to avoid geopolitical fighting in 1997. While there, she worked in a Thai restaurant often early in the morning before she went to school and after school. In 2011, she immigrated to Buffalo, alone and not knowing English. “I just opened a dictionary and read and talked to people,” she explained of her English acquisition. She worked as a hotel cleaner and eventually she brought her family to the U.S. "My favorite thing about owning a business is that it allows me to be creative and have the ability to experiment with recipes and to produce new dishes. I enjoy being my own boss and making the business decisions."





08 Mar 2024
6:00pm - 9:00pm EST

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  • 617 Main St, Buffalo, NY 14203, USA