Mexican Heritage Festival schedule:
9 a.m. – Doors open
10 a.m. – 10:20 a.m. – Opening ceremonies, presentation of flags, opening speaker
10:20 a.m. – Children’s costume contest
11 a.m. – DJ Hot Sauce, master of ceremonies and music throughout
11 a.m.-2 p.m. – Tiny, Little Miss, Junior and Miss Mexican Heritage pageants
2-3:30 p.m. – Mariachi Real Mexicanisimo
3:30-6 p.m. – Mexican Heritage Society Folkloric Dancers, with Nancy Figueroa
6:30-7:30 p.m. – Queens Courts Promenade
7:30-8:30 p.m. – Cazadores, de San Luis
9 p.m.-1 a.m. – Grupo Flash, De Nueva Rosita, Coahuila
By Sherry Koonce
The News staff writer
Port Arthur will continue its celebration of the city’s Mexican heritage this weekend with a cultural fiesta complete with folklorico dancers and mariachi bands.
The 45th Mexican Heritage Society Fiesta, at 9 a.m. Saturday at the Robert A. “Bob” Bowers Civic Center, 3401 Cultural Center Drive in Port Arthur, will add a little spice to a fun-filled family day.
Robert Moreno Jr., event organizer, said last year’s fiesta was so successful that people did not want to leave.
This year promises even more to stick around for.
Folklorico dancers in state costumes, spicy aromas from food vendors, pageants and music are among the many activities planned to provide a glimpse into Mexican culture.
“We encourage everyone to come, no matter what ethnic group. One of our functions is to promote our culture to the community and to the surrounding areas,” Moreno said.
The annual event draws crowds from not only the Golden Triangle, but from the Houston and Southwest Louisiana areas.
Both Grupo Flash and corn in a cup will return to this year. The cumbia and salsa band was so popular this past year that the 2013 fiesta has added an extra hour for the party to continue.
Mariachi Real Mexicanisimo and Cazadores will headline the musical slate along with D.J. Hot Sauce.
Back by popular demand is corn in a cup — a spicy-as-you-want-it traditional Latino concoction filled wiht the customer’s choice of mayonnaise, lime, cheese and salsa picante.
“It’s getting better and better every year,” Moreno said.
Proceeds go toward college scholarships, just as they have since the fiesta’s inception.
Vendors will include Patrillo Leather Goods, H-E-B Pharmacy, Romero’s Grill, Trinity Lutheran Church and St. Joseph Catholic Youth Organization.
Health screenings and snacks will also be available.
Sponsors are Motiva, Southeast Texas Arts Council, Allstate Insurance, H-E-B, Trinity Lutheran Church, and BBVA Compass Bank.
Day admission is $8 for adults and $5 for senior citizens and children aged 11-17. Younger children will be admitted at no charge with a parent or guardian.
Tickets are $20 for everyone after 6:30 p.m. Patrons who paid $8 or $5 earlier in the day will be given band for readmission.