All Buffalo loves a parade. And it seems as if there is a parade, or multiple parades, every weekend. On Saturday, September 6, 2014, the Puerto Rican and Hispanic Day Parade of Western New York Association will be hosting the 12th Annual Puerto Rican and Hispanic Day Parade of WNY. But that’s just a part of the festivities.
The week before, there will be a “Levanta Tu Bndera” (Raise your flag) ceremony in front of City Hall* – two veterans of the Borinqueneer Korean War 65 Infantry Regiment will be honored. Juan Negron (Korean War Vet) will raise the Puerto Rican flag, and the son of Eusebio Martinez (Korean War Vet) will raise the American flag.
*Augustine “Chito” Olivencia has been named the 2014 Grand Marshal. Chito has worked for over 40 years as an advocate for the Hispanic community, and has continued the legacy of his father, Augustine “Pucho” Olivencia. The committee has named Edwin Martinez, Publisher of Panorama Hispano News, Santiago Mansferer, Executive Director of El Buen Amigo, and Luis Rodriguez, Publisher of La Ultima Hora, as the 2014 Honorary Hosts.
“This event is dear to me because although I am Puerto Rican it warms my heart to know that I can share this special weekend with all my neighboring Hispanics and Americans as we stand together and raise our flags,” said Yolanda Martinez-Rodriguez. “I am proud of being a Puerto Rican but more proud of being diverse and inclusive.”
On Saturday the 6th the parade will commence from City Hall (1pm), down Niagara Street, to Porter Avenue. Flags will line Niagara Street (Avenida San Juan), and the Peace Bridge will be lit with the colors of all of the Latin American country colors. The family friendly festival is open to the public. Following is the overview of events.
Friday, September 5th: Food and free concerts at LaSalle Park
Saturday, September 6th: Legendary singer Tony Vega (Salsa Legend and Bandleader) will perform in the evening, as will a mariachi band
Sunday, September 7th: Tribute to Jose “Cheo” Feliciano (who passed away this year), featuring the band Pulse. A Colombian Valleneto band will perform that afternoon