Mary Lou Rosales
The Corazon de Latinos Unidos (CDLU) has announced that this year’s Fiestas Patrias in Eloy’s Main Street Park will take place the evening of Friday, Sept. 17 and all day Saturday, Sept. 18, according to new board president, Andrew Rodriguez. The Fiestas were not held last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Fiestas Patrias have been a long-time tradition in Eloy that continues because of the CDLU. The grassroots organization formed in 2003 to plan and conduct the Eloy Fiestas Patrias, a two-day festival on the weekend closest to Sept. 16, commemorating Mexico’s independence from Spain. The CDLU members’ initial goal was the “rebirth” of the Eloy Fiestas, which the organization has now successfully sponsored for the last 18 years. They pledged to promote and preserve the culture and traditions of the Hispanic community.
All the Eloy Fiestas activities take place at Eloy Main Street Park at the Kiosco. The event features Mexican music by well-known Mariachi groups and local bands where Fiestas participants enjoy dancing at the open-air street dance. Ballet Folklorico dance groups are invited to display their traditional dancing and beautiful costumes. A car show and contest will feature unique cars and motorcycles.
Participants also attend the Fiestas to enjoy the variety of food offered at the food booths and food trucks set up around the park. A parade, led by a grand marshal, is held on the morning of the second day and runs down Main Street. It includes mounted fancy prancing horses, decorated floats, Eloy Elementary and High School bands, and adorned vehicles. The Grito de Dolores, or Mexican Cry of Independence, is declared as is tradition throughout Mexico and throughout the years. It is a cry of independence from Spain started in 1871.
Sponsorships and profits from the vendor booths help pay for the cost of conducting the Fiestas. Sponsors have also been very generous in the past and have been instrumental in defraying the costs. Sponsorships are available and anyone wishing to be a sponsor can call or email one of the two individuals responsible for recruiting sponsors: Norrie Burruel at 520-560-2954 or [email protected], or Ralph Varela at 520-466-7765 or [email protected].
Other support can be made through the purchase of banners. The banner can be a personal, family, or business message. Additional information on the Fiestas schedule, including the program, parade, and entertainment, will be published as plans are finalized. Applications for vendor space, sponsorship, banners, parade, and car show can be obtained at Great Western Bank, 712 N. Main St., Eloy; Ivory Towers Realty, 13084 S. Sunland Gin Road, Arizona City; Pinal Hispanic Council, 107 E. 4th St., Eloy; and Community Action Human Resources Agency, 109 N. Sunshine, Eloy.