Chicago Latinos will be able to celebrate one of their most important cultural events with a virtual parade on June 20 from Paseo Boricua.
Brooklyn, NY – The Puerto Rican People’s Day Parade is going to look and feel a little different this year as the celebration goes virtual to keep the community safe and healthy during these unprecedented times. The Puerto Rican Cultural Center (PRCC) and HITN-TV have joined forces to commemorate the 42nd edition of this popular parade on June 20 with an online rendition that will celebrate Puerto Rican heritage and culture in Chicago.
“In this time of the COVID-19 epidemic, and these trying moments in the struggle for social and racial justice, the Puerto Rican Cultural Center is honored to present, in partnership with HITN, our virtual 42nd Puerto Rican People’s Day Parade. As we celebrate the rich legacy of our cultural roots through our music and our art, we will also promote the making of our collective aesthetics as exemplified with the historical markers of the 25th Anniversary of our Flags of Steel and the 20th Anniversary of our national museum- the National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts and Culture, among other historical achievements,” stated José E. López, Executive Director at PRCC.
A longstanding tradition that celebrates cultural pride and awareness, the parade recognizes Puerto Ricans’ historical impact in the heart of Chicago’s Humboldt Park community. This special virtual presentation will also be dedicated to the 20th anniversary of the Humboldt Park Vocational Education Center, the 20th anniversary of the Humboldt Park Public Library in Troy, the 15th anniversary of the UrbanTheater Company, and the 15th anniversary of Muévete.
Amidst the festive atmosphere, this year, in particular, organizers are making a special call to the entire Latino community residing in Chicago to participate in the 2020 Census, reiterating the importance of being counted to ensure accurate representation at every level of government to have an active voice and influence in the changes and policies that affect minority communities the most.
The virtual parade will feature remarks from State Senator Omar Aquino (D-Chicago), State Representative Delia C. Ramirez (D-Chicago), Jessie Fuentes, Co-Chair of the Puerto Rican Agenda, Dr. Jesus Hernandez Burgos, Director of the Puerto Rican Cultural Center’s Public Health Initiatives, Roberto Maldonado, alderman of the 26th Ward of the city of Chicago, and Billy Ocasio, Executive Director of the National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts & Culture.
State Senator Omar Aquino commented, “I whole heartedly join in on the celebration of the 42nd Parade of the Puerto Rican People. This celebration fills me with joy. Growing up in this Puerto Rican neighborhood in Chicago, and as its Senator, I want to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the installation of the two largest steel flags in the world, which shape our dear Paseo Boricua. This celebration for me, constitutes an act that fills me with joy, since I am the son of this Puerto Rican neighborhood of Chicago, and as its Senator I want to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the installation of the two largest steel flags in the world, which frame our dear Paseo Boricua.”
And he adds, “At the same, I also wish to congratulate the foundation of the only Puerto Rican Museum in the United States, the National Puerto Rican Museum of Art and Culture on its Twelfth Anniversary. I want to urge everyone to fill out the 2020 Census. If, you don’t get counted in the 2020 Census, you don’t count!”
State Representative (Assemblywoman) Delia Ramirez says, “I am Delia Ramírez and I am extremely proud to represent the 4th District of the State of Illinois, the district with the highest concentration of Puerto Ricans. I stand in solidarity with the Puerto Rican people and as such, I am co-author of a bill that would preserve and maintain the cultural preservation district called Puerto Rico Town, which encompasses the area of Division Street from Western Ave to Kostner Ave. This would not only help promote business and commerce, but also put an end to the displacement of our people.” She adds, “Celebrate this virtual 42nd Parade of the Puerto Rican People broadcast with me. If you don’t get counted in the 2020 Census, you don’t count!”
There will be performances and special appearances from AfriCaribe, Ivelisse “Bombera de Corazón” Díaz, Segundo Ruiz Belvis Cultural Center, UrbanTheater Company, Miss Universo Latina Plus 2019, Valeria Méndez, and the Miss Gay Puerto Rico Organization.
The parade will begin at the Roberto Clemente Community Academy and will continue at Nellie’s Restaurant, Ciclo Urbano, Papa’s Cache Sabroso, Esmeralda Lounge, AfriCaribe, Supermercado Municipal, Barberia Luquillo, ComEd, Centro Infantil Consuelo Lee Corretjer, SBDC at PRCC Humboldt Park, La Casita de Don Pedro Albizu Campos, La Plena Restaurant, UrbanTheater Company, Humboldt Park Youth Employment Program, Café Colao, Curramba Colombian Restaurant, El Rescate, Jayuya Barber Shop, La Bruquena, Yauco Food & Liquor Store, PRCC Health Services, Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos Puerto Rican High School, Humboldt Park Vocational Educational Center/Wright College, Latin American Motorcycle Association, and Norwegian American Hospital. The virtual tour will culminate in the National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts & Culture.
On Sunday, June 21, at 10AM, HITN-TV will broadcast the special program Tú Cuentas en Chicago presented by Gerson Borrero that will feature performances, prerecorded content, and interviews with elected officials. During the one-hour special there will also be a tour of the history and culture of Humboldt Park, highlighting the historical collaboration for the development of the Puerto Rican and Mexican communities settled in this area of Chicago threatened by gentrification. Chicago residents can tune in via Comcast 647, DIRECTV 461, DISH 880, and U-verse 3055. The show will be broadcast in Puerto Rico via Liberty Cable.