BUILDING BRIDGES TO BUILD COMMUNITY
Over the past three years, we have thrown three very different Fiestas! In our first year, with over $20,000 in community sponsorships, we threw an amazing block party in Central Park, one that exceeded our wildest hopes. With amazing food, a fantastic cantina, live music all day long, great kids’ activities, and an active Mercado full of vendors, we spent all day celebrating the Hispanic community that has been such an important part of our area for so many years—though often unrecognized. After all the bills were paid, we were even able to donate $5,000 to the Migrant Resource Council, the single largest donation they have received and one that transformed the services they offered migrant families in our area in 2020. The next two years were disrupted by COVID, but we threw Fiestas in line with best practices for safety during the pandemic and were able to donate $5,500 to Lighthouse Immigration Advocates in 2021 and $5,000 to the Immigrant Relief Fund at St. John’s Episcopal Church in 2022. We’re looking forward to his year’s Fiesta and hope you will join us in the celebration!
This year, we will have an entire week of celebration planned. We will start the week on Friday, September 16 at 5:00 PM with a tribute to The Queen of Tejano music, Selena Quintanilla. This show is a vibrant and exciting eruption of the musical talent that was Selena. Almost Selena is more than a show – it’s an experience! One of the closest Selena Quintanilla tribute shows in North America. 100% authentic in the sound, the look, and the clothing.
We will continue with a Restaurant Week beginning on Monday, September 19 through FIESTA Saturday, September 24. Saturday begins with the Parade of Flags at 11:00 AM marching from the Grand Haven Downtown Social District at Washington Avenue and First Avenue to Central Park with a ceremony around the park fountain.
Performances will begin at 12:00 PM with dancing, DJ’s and live musical performances through 10:00 PM. A Mercado will be available throughout the park, children’s activities and Food Trucks and Vendors and a Beer Tent.
We received our formal 501c3 status in 2022, the Tri-Cities Puentes Initiative (TCPI). Puentes is the Spanish word for bridge—a powerful symbol for our area and the inspiration for what our organization wants to do: build bridges between Latin American cultures and the larger Tri-Cities community.
Reyna MaskoOttawa County/Grand Haven Human Relations Commission
The Rev. Dr. Jared C. CramerRector of St. John’s Episcopal Church