Contact: Joe Vargo, Perris Public Information Officer
Phone: 951-956-2120

Perris multicultural festival draws 1,000

Juan Lemus & Mayor

Perris City Councilman Mark Yarbrough (center) welcomes dignitaries from Michoacan in Mexico to the city’s multicultural festival.

More than 1,000 Perris residents came out to welcome a group of dignitaries from their sister city in Mexico who made the trip to Southern California to attend a parade and festival celebrating the community’s Latino heritage.

The Sept. 21 event was sponsored by the organization Training Occupational Development Educating Communities, (TODEC) which works to assist immigrants become economically, socially and educationally self sufficient.

TODEC’s founder, Perris resident Luz Maria Ayala, has worked on behalf of immigrants and underprivileged residents for decades.

Ayala called Perris a “very multicultural city” and said the festival celebrated those cultures.  Although the main emphasis of the event was Perris’ relationship with the city of Cotija in the state of Michoacan, Ayala said residents come from many different countries, all which makes the city a melting pot of diversity and culture.

“This is a great day for Perris,” Ayala said. “This is a good opportunity for everyone to work together. Everybody is important.”

There was plenty for the crowd to take part in. A mariachi band played traditional selections and dancers performed wearing traditional dress. Residents and visitors lined the parade route to watch the equestrian and marching units. Afterward, food booths and face painting added to the festivities. A bevy of young women from the Perris area welcomed visitors from the Michoacan governor’s office while representing each of Mexico’s states. Azteca, Univision and Telemundo television filmed the proceedings for broadcast.

Perris Mayor Daryl Busch said the festivities could not have gone off any better.

“We are happy to have you here,” Busch told the visitors. “We a nice today, a beautiful parade and a wonderful turnout.”