By Pablo Jaime Sainz
If you are a proud American, but deep inside you your Mexican heritage is very strong, then this year´s Celebrate Chula Vista 4th of July celebration is the perfect place for you.
It will include your All-American extravaganza, such as hotdogs and hamburgers and great fireworks, as well as live mariachi music.
Some people might be wondering what mariachi has to do with 4th of July, which is an American holiday.
Well, mariachi music has become such a popular genre in the United States, that frankly, some of the best performers are Mexican-American youth that are taking the stage by storm.
The Chula Vista Chamber of Commerce, which is organizing the event, knows this. That´s why they´re bringing Mariachi Reina de Los Angeles, the most popular all-female mariachi in the United States!
“Many people have called our office saying that they´re happy we´re bringing mariachi music to our celebration,” Marcy Weaber, membership coordinator for the Chula Vista Chamber of Commerce. “It’s such a fiesta style music.”
In a musical tradition dominated by male groups, the ladies of Mariachi Reyna de Los Angeles are true revolutionaries. Despite the pink charros, the women who form this group are all outstanding musicians who have taken the mariachi genre by surprise.
“We´re glad to have the opportunity to show the great female talent that exists in mariachi,” said in an exclusive interview José Hernández, founder and director of Mariachi Reyna de Los Angeles.
And if you´re wondering if San Diego has any mariachi talent, Celebrate Chula Vista will be the perfect occasion for you to see performing some of the most talented young mariachi players in the South Bay when several mariachi bands from the Sweetwater Unified High School District´s mariachi program take the stage by storm.
One of those mariachis is Mariachi Chula Vista, from Chula Vista High School.
“It’s good for our youth to have the opportunity to participate in a community event and at the same time show off their mariachi skills,” said Mike Fogelquist, mariachi teacher at Chula Vista High School.
Weaber said that the Chamber of Commerce feels proud to give these students the opportunity to perform for their community.
“One of the reasons why we chose student mariachis was because they are part of our city and this is a community event,” she said.
Last year about 100,000 people attended Celebrate Chula Vista, according to Weaber. This year attendance is expected to be even higher. The event is free, she added.
Celebrate Chula Vista, which took more than six months to organize, is the Chamber´s largest event of the year, with support from local businesses and residents, Weaber said.
Every year, a vast part of attendees are Latinos, she said.
“I´m sure that now that we have mariachi music, many more Latinos will attend,” she said.
The celebration will begin at noon, with the crowning of Miss South County. These lovely and talented young ladies will compete for the opportunity to represent South County in numerous city-wide events and go on to compete for the title of Miss California.
In addition to mariachi, there will be a variety of music styles, including the Patriotic Band, which will pay tribute to 4th of July.
Also, there´s going to be plenty of food with Taste of the Bay, which will showcase the many flavors of Chula Vista, allowing you to sample all of the delicious food and beverages of the locale.
The 2006 Business Expo at Celebrate Chula Vista will provide you with some well-suited South Bay business resources and will provide informative and educational booths as well as offer an excellent networking opportunity. You’ll get the chance to meet local entrepreneurs, visit the booths of regional realtors: Corky McMillin Companies, Sharp, SDG&E, Chula Vista Living Magazine, and make many San Diego county connections.
For more information on Celebrate Chula Vista, please call the Chula Vista Chamber of Commerce at 619.420.6603 or go to www.celebratechulavista.com.