Contact: Joe Vargo, Perris Public Information Officer
Phone: 951-956-2120
jvargo@cityofperris.org

Perris Multi-cultural Festival Celebrates Diversity

city council
Perris City Councilmembers, including Mayor Daryl Busch, Rita Rogers, Mark Yarbrough, Joanne Evans and Al Landers
took time to participate in the City’s Multi-Cultural Festival
Perris Mayor Daryl Busch and City Redevelopment Project Coordinator Veronica Arana
Perris Mayor Daryl Busch and City Redevelopment Project Coordinator Veronica Arana .

A crowd of about 5,000 people descended on the Perris City Hall campus this week to celebrate the community’s ethnic diversity with a special emphasis on its large Latino population.

The second multi-cultural festival featured a parade through the Downtown Area, concerts from well-known musicians, lots of food vendors and a visit from the delegation of Perris’ sister city, Cotija, in the Mexican state of Michoacan.

Perris Mayor Daryl Busch praised the many communities that make up the City’s social and cultural fabric.

“We have a lot of diversity in our City and each group adds to the life and spirit of our town,” Busch said.

The 2009 Multi-Cultural Festival, sponsored by the organization TODEC (Training Occupational Development Educating Communities), kicked off with a parade down D Street, which featured more than 50 entries, including floats and equestrian participants. Parade organizers were presented with a proclamation naming the festivities “The Day of the Charro.”

Mayor Pro-Tem Mark Yarbrough introduces Consul Carolina Zaragosa Flores during a VIP reception
Mayor Pro-Tem Mark Yarbrough introduces Consul Carolina Zaragosa Flores during a VIP reception.

Mayor Busch was joined by City Council members Mark Yarbrough, Al Landers, Rita Rogers and Joanne Evans.

Afterwards, the fun moved to City Hall, where the crowd gathered at a stage to hear musical groups perform. There were also mariachi bands and dancers in native garb displaying their form. Musical acts included Lupillo Rivera, Gerardo Rivera, Beto Cortez and Alejandro Fernandez. Food vendors agreed to donate a part of their sales to charitable causes in Mexico, like hospitals, schools and churches.

A luncheon was held for the guests of honor, which included Consul Carolina Zaragosa Flores, consulado de Mexico and Juan Carlos Ochoa Ochoa, who represented Cotija, a small town known for the cheese that bears its name and an imposing cathedral. Members of the Mexican media, including La Prensa, TV Azteca and Univision also came to Perris for the festival.

Ochoa Ochoa said he was overwhelmed by the hospitality displayed by Perris leaders and residents.

A colorfully dressed girl danced a traditional Mexico favorite during the TODEC festival
A colorfully dressed girl danced a traditional Mexico favorite during the TODEC festival.

Zaragosa Flores thanked the City for supporting the festival.

“Thank you for supporting our great community,” she said. “Thank for allowing us to express our language and our culture. You are such great people to allow us to share our culture with our children.”

Luz Gallegos, a member of TODEC who helped organize the multi-cultural festival, said cultures from throughout Latin and South America took center stage, including Brazil, El Salvador and Guatemala in addition to Mexico.