The Hightstown and East Windsor community are gearing up to showcase the artistic and cultural traditions of Latinos in New Jersey and to promote intercultural awareness and understanding through the annual Latino Festival of Hightstown-East Windsor on Sept. 30.
The event will be held from noon to 6 p.m. at Hightstown High School, located at 25 Leshin Lane, Hightstown. The event is free and open to the public, and ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) accessible and free parking is available on site. In case of rain, the event will be held on Sunday, Oct. 1 at the same location and time.
The festival was established in 2013 by local residents from Hightstown and East Windsor under the auspices of Rise Community Service.
Celebrating its 10th anniversary, the festival returns to the Hightstown High School, where it originally began. The new location has allowed the festival to grow significantly as an outdoor event, now engaging thousands of participants. This year the festival will showcase a varied program: Andean music and dance from Ecuador, Bolivia and Peru, as well as Mariachi music and Dominican jazz, and cumbia and salsa ensembles. The event will also include a health fair, arts and crafts, games, food sales and raffles.
The program will feature traditional Mexican Mariachi Flor de Mexico, Inti Andino, Ecuadorian dance ensembles Yachak Kallari and Folklor Azuayo, singers Danny Galan, Jake Ortiz, Gustavo Arce and Gustavo Andres, Dominican jazz saxophonist Carlos Estrada, Colombian cumbia band Sonora Dinamita, and the Venezuelan salsa band Los Adolescentes El Reencuentro. As per recent years, the festival will recognize individuals and organizations that have significantly contributed to supporting the health and wellness of the Latino community and its residents.
The festival is organized by the Hightstown-East Windsor Latino Festival Committee, with generous support from Rise, a Community Service Partnership and sponsorships from JP Morgan Chase, Jersey Central Power and Light, Diversified Rack & Shelving, Sansone Nissan and many other business and community organizations.
The program is also made possible in part by the Mercer County Cultural and Heritage Commission through funding from the Mercer County Board of Commissioners, and the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts.