2015 Bronx Central American Independence PARADE and FESTIVAL in the BRONX on SUNDAY, September 13th 2015 (19th Annual)

 

 

Bronx, New York — It’s mid-September and that means that many Central American countries or descendants of people from Central American countries celebrate their independence.  Most countries, notably Honduras and Guatemala formally separated from Spain on September 15th 1821, and many celebrations, festivals and such are organized around the first half of September tying in to that anniversary.

Copyright 2015 by Teofilo Colon Jr.  (a.k.a. “Tio Teo”).  All Rights Reserved.  Telephone: (646) 961-3674.

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In New York City, there are a couple of celebrations taking place (or have already taken place) honoring Central American Independence; notably by people of Garifuna descent that readers of this website may want to pay attention to.

The International Honduran and Central American Parade Inc presents the 19th Annual Central American Independence Parade and Festival, which will take place in the BRONX on SUNDAY, September 13th 2015.  This Parade and Festival commemorates the 194rth Anniversary since most of the countries in Central America gained Independence from Spain.

Organizers of The Annual Bronx Central  American Parade and  Festival in 2011.  Photo by Teofilo  Colon  Jr.   All Rights Reserved.

Organizers of The Annual Bronx Central American Parade and Festival in 2011. Photo by Teofilo Colon Jr. All Rights Reserved.

Marchers will parade along Southern Boulevard and Boston Road in a demonstration of aspects of Central American patriotic pride, heritage and culture with a cultural display of traditional costumes, music folklore and other traits that make Central American culture distinct.  The Central American Independence Parade in part of the annual Bronx celebration of Central American Independence–the revelry concludes with the Central American Day Festival, where singers, bands, dance companies, etc gather to showcase their talents on stage.

Below is VIDEO of the 2011 Central American Parade in the Bronx.

 

Parade Grand Marshal Marvin B. Figueroa along with Posthumous Grand Marshal Alfredo Thiebaud, founder of Delicioso Coco Helado will lead the Parade procession from East Tremont Avenue and Southern Boulevard (location of the Happy Land Monument) down Boston Road to Charlotte Street and Crotona Park East.

Organizers of The Annual Bronx Central American Parade and Festival in 2011. Photo by Teofilo Colon Jr. All Rights Reserved.  (646) 961-3674

Organizers of The Annual Bronx Central American Parade and Festival in 2011. Photo by Teofilo Colon Jr. All Rights Reserved. (646) 961-3674

The Festival takes place immediately after the parade in Crotona Park (between Crotona Avenue and Claremont Parkway).   The PARADE is scheduled to begin at 12noon SHARP.  The Parade and Cultural Festival is FREE and Open To The Public.

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Distinguished individuals scheduled to participate in the 2015 Central American Independence Parade in the Bronx include:

Marvin B. Figueroa (Grand Marshal)

Alfredo Thiebaud (Honorary / Posthumous Grand Marshal)

Esly Guity (National Godmother – Guatemala)

Alma Ordonez (National Godmother – Honduras)

Melany Nunes (Queen – Central America)

Katherine Sorto (Queen – Central America)

Mya Forbes (Princess — Central America)

Nino Arzu (Grand Celebrity – Honduras)

Socie Gck (Grand Celebrity – Guatemala)

Big Nando (Special Invite)

Myrna Guerra (Honorary Invite)

Consulates representing various Central American countries

International Honduran and Central American Parade Inc (IHCAP), is an all-volunteer nonprofit organization, organized and existing under the law of the State of New York, with a mission to create awareness and appreciation of the Central American culture in the New York Metropolitan Area.  Its objective is to promote Central America’s diverse cultural richness by showcasing community spirit and solidarity by celebrating community achievements and contributions Central Americans have made to the economic and cultural development of this nation.

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To achieve this goal, IHCAP encourages attendance, involvement and building enthusiasm and anticipation so these wonderful celebrations become among the most sought-after in the Bronx.  The event also provides opportunities for community members to gather and socialize regardless of ethnicity, language, race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, economic status, physical or learning ability or educational background.

Some of the Attendees of the 2014 Central American Festival in the Bronx.  Photo by Teofilo Colon Jr.  All Rights Reserved.  (646) 961-3674.

Some of the Attendees of the 2014 Central American Festival in the Bronx. Photo by Teofilo Colon Jr. All Rights Reserved. (646) 961-3674.

Scheduled to perform at the Central American Independence Festival (which takes place AFTER the Parade in Crotona Park in the Bronx) are:

Nino Arzu

Big Nando

Lil Boy (Estilo Caro)

Panchan

Don Cuellar w/ Grupo Xcstacy

Andy Ordonez

Danza Mayas Raices

Chief Joseph Chatoyer Garifuna Folkloric Ballet of New York

J Dove Productions

Hamalali Wayunagu Garifuna Folkloric and Modern Dance Company

Grupo Adora

El Indomable

Walili

JC Rasta

Rigo Lambert

Frank Velasquez

Isy Martinez

Budari Dance Company

Alex Barcelona

La Warachera

Here is video of Garifuna Singer Musician LIL JUNE at the 2013 Central American Festival in the Bronx.

Below is video of El Nino de La Bachata at the 2013 Central American Festival in the Bronx.

Food, Arts and Craft, Live Music and all sorts of Entertainment for the Entire Family will be available.

The Parade is scheduled to begin at 12noon.

TRAIN: You can take the 2 train to 174th Street Subway Stop.

BUS:  BX11, BX15, BX17, BX55

I have gone to the 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013 Central American Festival in the Bronx and have found that most of the performers and acts are of Garifuna descent, mainly from Honduras, Guatemala and Belize.  It looks like it’ll be that way this year as well.

ABOUT The Garifuna People

The Garifuna people are people of African descent (in other words, Black people) whose ancestry can be traced to Africans mixing with Carib Indians and Arawak Indians on the Eastern Caribbean island of St. Vincent.  From this fusion of race and ethnicities in St. Vincent Island, a distinct culture and language arose.  They are noted for being one of the few (only?) peoples of African descent (again, in other words, Black people) in the Americas to have maintained aspects of their ancestral culture and full use of their ancestral language for everyday use over the course of hundreds of years.

After being defeated in war with the British on St. Vincent in 1796; 1004 men,  1779 women and 1,555 children for a total of 4,338 people (mostly Black Caribs, as the Garifuna people were then known) were captured and taken to Baliceaux, a small island, a rock, basically, off the coast of St. Vincent.  This took place from July 1796 through February/March 1797.  About 2,000 Garifunas died of a mysterious and very infectious fever while living on Baliceaux awaiting their fate.   1

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In early March 1797, the remaining Garifunas were loaded onto the HMS Experiment and other ships.  Once they were rounded up, the convoy were taken to a Bequia, which is another island off the coast of St. Vincent. They proceeded to go to Grenada to get water, then Jamaica for refueling, then finally Roatan, Honduras, arriving on April 12th 1797.

Finding much of Roatan unliveable, the Garifuna people petitioned officials representing Spain and it’s government (which controlled much of Central America at the time) to be allowed to move to the Honduran mainland.  Upon being allowed to move to the Honduran mainland, namely the port town of Trujillo, Honduras in May 1797; the Garifunas settled many towns and villages along the Caribbean coast of Honduras.  They also migrated to the neighboring countries of Guatemala, Belize (then known as British Honduras) and Nicaragua over the years.  Finally, Garifuna People have also migrated to the United States of America where generations have settled in cities like New York City, Chicago and Los Angeles.  Despite their mainly Spanish surnames, their culture and history are distinct from other Afro-American and Latino ethnic groups and it’s important to keep that in mind.

If you find the BEING GARIFUNA Website helpful and useful, please DONATE.  Every dollar donated helps keep this website in operation.

 

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