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La Liga de Las Americas

Mayors of Mayagüez and Cleveland at annual parade


By Arooj Ashraf, La Prensa Cleveland Correspondent


Cleveland, Aug. 11, 2007: Julia De Burgos Cultural Arts Center’s 39th Annual Puerto Rican Parade briefly halted in downtown Cleveland traffic on August 11, 2007. Fifty-four fancy floats marched their way west on St. Clair Ave., tossing candy to cheering pedestrians who also waved Puerto Rican flags.


While the weather cooperated, the parade lacked its usual grander of three day festivities, games, and cultural food—the festival was canceled due to a setback in securing venue and sponsorships.


Zuleika Miranda was disappointed by the smaller event and said she missed the dancing, music, and competitions that are the trademarks of the three-day festival. She did plan to attend the official after party at the Club Alma Yucana that began at 2:00 p.m. and lasted past midnight.


This year’s theme was “Cultivando Nuestro Futuro: Nuestros Niños.” The Grand Marshall of the Parade was José G. Rodríguez, Mayor of Mayagüez and Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson served at the Padrino. Lucy Torres, Hispanic Liaison from the City of Cleveland served as the Madrina.


Alexander Roman and Marianette Santiago served as Mr. & Miss Puerto Rican Image 2007 and received a roundtrip to Puerto Rico. They mingled with the crowds, dressed in royal garb.


The ‘Valor Boricua Award” was given to the “Isla del Encanto Folkloric Dance Group” for their contribution in enriching Puerto Rican cultural traditions in Cleveland.


Primary sponsors of the parade were Continental Airlines, Councilman Joe Santiago, Arcel Mittal United Steel Workers, Univision, and La Prensa.


Plans for next years 40th Annual Parade and Latino Fest are already under way. If you would like to get involved please contact Julia De Burgos at (216) 961-2970 or visit www.juliadeburgos.org








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