Foodies can sample some of Los Angeles’ diverse cuisine Thursday when UCLA’s monthly event series returns with a nighttime food market.

The UCLA Night Market takes place Thursday beginning at 7 p.m. in Westwood Village.

The market is part of UCLA’s First Thursdays event series and is the first event of the year. The series was launched to “create joy and forge connections between the campus and Westwood,” officials said.

The First Thursdays event series features daytime activities at the Westwood farmers market, and has included “mentorship cafés, mindful awareness instruction, financial literacy coaching and live poetry.” Evening events include themed block parties with live music, cooking demonstrations and giveaways.

More than 35,000 people have taken part in the First Thursdays series since it was launched a year-and-a-half ago.

Prior to the night market, UCLA is hosting an event to support the UCLA Blood & Platelet Center at the Westwood Village farmers market.

This year, UCLA plans to expand its monthly event series beyond the boundaries of Westwood Village, onto the university campus and into downtown Los Angeles.

The events are free and open to the public.

Thursday’s nighttime event takes place from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. and features various food vendors, art projects, body painting, hot sauce tasting and a booth with volunteers from the Westside Food Bank.

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