These are the thoughts of a Texas transplant in West Michigan who makes his living as a newspaper reporter by evening, and a struggling novelist by day.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

latino festival

had a great time yesterday at the park. the city had its annual latino art and film festival this weekend. the park was filled with several hundred people watching folklorico dancing from various groups from here, GR and detroit. i ended up visiting with my brother in law and his family.

i get a kick out watching this kind of thing up here. back in south texas it was part of what was there and took it for granted. but up here, where it's not part of the everyday culture, i guess i appreciate it more.

i really liked this year that the festival was condensed into four days and all the locations were near each other so people could walk from the park to one of the theaters to watch a film. that's something that should have been done was scaled down but nice.

now i wish they'd have other things incorporated into it. they talked about having a folklorico dance contest and i like it. but what about a bingo event or chalupa playing event. something on a grand scale. those types of things draw people like crazy. great way to raise money and have tons of fun. or what about something they used to have back in alice, a bean and meat cookoff. over there they had a wild pig contest (who could cook the best wild pig), but here it could be a carne guisada or fajita contest. or even best flour tortilla contest. that would attract a lot of the townspeople to both participate, enjoy good food, and watch. if it had that affect in alice, it would certainly have that affect here in holland.

or how about having an international food area where people from different latin or hispanic cultures cook foods from their respective country and have tasting area. i think the farmers market area or even the civic center would be grat for that. think of the unity it would bring to our culture here if everyone participated in something like that. what an experience. mayby i'll suggest these things.

either way, i like this festival. this year it brought the people out who compose the makeup of this city -- both white and hispanic appealed to who we are as a hispanic and latin people. next year, hopefully it will further that connection.


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