After being delayed in June due to security and weather concerns, the fourth annual Colorado Latino Festival will roll out this weekend in Boulder.
The free festival will be from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday at the Boulder bandshell, 1212 Canyon Blvd.It will feature music, food, dance and activities celebrating Latin American and Caribbean culture. It is hosted by Barrio E’ — an art, culture and community organization.
Inspiring unity and educating people on the “rich cultural contributions” of Latin American and Caribbean people who live in Colorado is the festival’s goal, according to a website description.
The Colorado Latino Festival was initially scheduled for June 23. Barrio E’ on June 22 announced on Facebook that poor weather conditions in the forecast, which called for showers and thunderstorms, and the “very real and announced threats of immigration raids by the White House,” led to the “hard decision” to postpone the festival.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement was expected to send agents into 10 cities, including Denver, to begin efforts to deport undocumented family members on the festival’s original date. The day before the raid was expected, President Donald Trump announced a delay in the initiative, in an effort to give Democrats a chance to revise asylum laws, according to prior news reports.
The threat of raids loomed again in mid-July, prompting a Lights of Liberty Vigil in Boulder and across the country. The Denver Post reported seeing no signs of ICE raids in the days after the announcement, though ICE officials would not confirm this.
Boulder declared itself a sanctuary city in January 2017, after unanimous support from city council members. The declaration has meant that the city refuses to comply with federal authorities by questioning, detaining or turning over people on the basis of immigration status.
Leading up to the festival, an interactive art installation can be seen in front of the Boulder County Courthouse West Wing at 13th and Pearl streets. People are encouraged to put a flag of their cultural heritage on the piece.
This year marks the second time Boulder has hosted the festival. Prior to that, it took place in Longmont. The city of Boulder, Latino Chamber of Commerce and a variety of local businesses and organizations will help sponsor this year’s event. To learn more, visit the Colorado Latino Festival website.