Last updated on July 2nd, 2019 at 09:42 am
The first-ever Milwaukee Latino Carnival and Grand Parade will add to Milwaukee’s host of summer festivals this year with six days of art, dancing, food, music and more all centered around Latino culture.
The event will run from Monday, July 22, through Saturday, July 27, with the cooperation of Milwaukee’s JCS Consulting Solutions LLC and 31 area businesses, corporations, institutions and nonprofit organizations.
Along with celebrating Latino culture, the event will help educate Milwaukee residents about specific customs and traditions from countries such as Peru, Brazil, Columbia, Venezuela, Paraguay, Panama, Guatemala, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic.
“There is a strong need to learn more about the traditions and the customs and the folklore of our countries,” said Juan Carlos Ruiz, director of events at JCS Consulting Solutions.
Among the Milwaukee Latino Carnival’s highlight events is a free tequila tasting on Monday, July 22, at Wherehouse, located at 818 S. Water St. in Milwaukee. That day, carnival organizers also plan to hold a carnival costume contest, awarding one grand prize winner with a getaway to Puerto Rico or Mexico.
Other highlights include a DJ semi-final competition on Thursday, July 25, and a final competition on Saturday, July 27, at Wherehouse.
On Friday, July 26, the carnival will team up with Milwaukee Gallery Night and Day to expose participants to authentic Latino art in venues throughout the city.
The week will culminate in the Grand Parade set for the morning of Saturday, July 27. Nearly 1,400 people will take part in the parade with live music, floats, motorcycle groups, classic model cars and dancers winding their way from the corner of 11th Street and National Street east toward Wherehouse. A party will follow the parade with more live music, food and drinks to celebrate the close of the week.
“This is going to be a fantastic event,” Ruiz said. “It’s very different because it brings the folklore, the tradition of the Latino American countries mixed with the experiences of living in the United States.
Partnering companies and organizations helping make the inaugural carnival possible include Art Milwaukee, Council for the Spanish Speaking, Journey House, Luna Realty LLC, Milwaukee Ballet, Milwaukee Fire Department, Milwaukee Mask and Puppet Theatre, Milwaukee Public Theatre, United Community Center, Walker’s Point Center for the Arts, and Wisconsin Conservatory of Music.
Funders of the carnival include WE Energies Foundation; Milwaukee Public Theatre; Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee; Helen Bader Foundation; Milwaukee Foundation; Journey House; Clarke Square Neighborhood Initiative; Demetrio, Premium Tequila; Landmark Credit Union; INTEC, LLC; Abrazo, LLC; MATC Local 212; Amatitlan Grocery; “La Casa Vieja” LLC; and Wherehouse – Hot Water.
For more information and a complete schedule of events, visit www.milwaukeelatinocarnival.com.