Tag Archives: Mariachi

Calexico Mariachi Festival to go on as Scheduled

By Luke Phillips
After all of the recent earthquakes in the area, Calexico Chamber of Commerce Director Hildy Rivera says that the 19th Annual Mariachi Festival Sin Fronteras is just what people need to relax.
“People just want to celebrate something,” she said. “It’s been rough, and people want to get out.”
The festival, marking it’s 10th year in Calexico, will begin this coming Tuesday and continue all week long before wrapping up with the main event at Crummett Park on Saturday May 15.
Rivera says the earthquake has also affected the way things are being done for this year’s mariachi festival. She says that all mariachi festival events were set to take place at the Calexico Cultural Arts Center, but plans had to be changed after the building was red-tagged by building inspectors.  That means an added expense for venue rentals
“We still have a mess on our hands, but we have to on,” Rivera said.
Rivera says sponsorships are also way down this year. She says the event only has 6 or 7 major sponsors this year, as opposed to 36 last year. Rivera suspects that the decline in financial support is due to business owners spending money on fixing earthquake damage instead.
“It was already hard to find sponsorships,” she said. “Now we have the earthquake to top it all off.”
As a way of seeking new revenue to pay for the festival, Rivera is asking politicians in the area, who are campaigning for this spring’s election, to make a $200 donation in exchange for an on-stage introduction and the chance to make a short presentation to the crowd.
“If they’re going to be out there campaigning anyway, and they’re going to be there (at the festival) anyway, maybe they can help support the event,” Rivera said. “We can help each other out.”
Kicking off the festivities will be the Mariachi Mixer Tuesday at Family Style Buffett, featuring dinner, music, and guest speakers. The mixer will also offer the opportunity to sign up for the returning ‘Mariachi Idol’ contest, an ‘American Idol’ style mariachi singing competition. Potential contestants are asked to bring a CD with their own music for the audition. Judges will choose the best three singers to compete at Saturday’s mariachi concert at Crummett Park. The contestants will perform with a live mariachi band and audience members will vote to determine this year’s winner.
A Mariachi Idol audition will also be held at 8 p.m. on Wednesday at the Camerena Library.
The Mariachi Idol contest will continue on Wednesday at the Mariachi Festival Artesian Exhibit and Sale, an art show set for 5 p.m. at the Woman’s Improvement Club, 320 Heber Ave. Refreshments will be served.
Event sponsors will be recognized on Friday night during the 19th Annual Mariach Festival Sponsor Reception at the Woman’s Improvement Club at 6 p.m. The event is for sponsors only and is not open to the public.
On Saturday, the main event kicks off at Crummett Park at 7 p.m.
Rivera says the concert will feature mostly the same acts as last year, with one exception. All female mariachi group Las Adelitas has been added to this year’s line-up. Rivera says that she is excited to see new talent on the stage.
“They’re an all female group, which we’ve never had before,” Rivera said. “We’re all looking forward to it.”
World-famous  Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlan will be headlining the festival again this year.
The group originally formed in Tecalitlan, Jalisco, Mexico in 1897 and has continued through five different generations of musicians, playing all over the world. In 1987 the band played on Linda Ronstadt’s album ‘Canciones de mi Padre”, which went on to win a Grammy award.
Rivera says the act is very well known among mariachi fans.
“In the mariachi world, this

In Other Words

Huffin’ & Puffin’ In Arizona;Election Is  Slow In Excitement; Mariachi Fest

WHAT’S ALL THE SHOUTING ABOUT IN ARIZONA AND AROUND THE COUNTRY? Seems Arizona wants the local cops to track down illegals and give them the heave ho from their state.
That’s brought howls of protest from the bulldogs, oops, I mean watchdogs, of justice! All duly self-righteous people must rise to the the cause of unfairness to illegal aliens.
Since when do we have to be fair to people who are here illegally?
Who are the police supposed to stop if they are checking on immigration status? Blonde haired, blue eyed northern Europeans?
And since when do people not have to carry identification anymore?
And where are all the protesters out marching about illegal Canadians in the country? If they show up in Arizona will they be checked for “papers?”
Checking people’s I.D. is nothing new. It happens a couple of billion times a day.
If you live in the Southwest, then you’re used to seeing Border Patrol Agents checking for green cards among field workers.
Everybody has to have some form of I.D. Social Security numbers are a form of I.D. even  though the government would like you to believe they aren’t.
Arizona wants to protect its borders. They’re encroaching on the Federal turf and the Feds don’t like it. We suppose the illegals don’t like it either.
But, somebody has to get a handle on the situation and the feds aren’t doing that. Making it harder for those who aren’t supposed to be here to stay here shouldn’t be attracting all the huffing and puffing it does.
Making state workers and local police do the work of the Federal government  is contrary to the spirit of the country. If the State wants illegal immigration controlled, then appeal to the feds.
A few years ago, the feds wanted teachers to screen students for having proper I.D. to prove they were here legally. They refused, saying they were teachers not policemen.
Hassling legitimate citizens and those who are in the country legally should be a major cause for concern, though.
When you start hassling citizens, then you’re going against everything the U.S. has stood for. Find a happy ground and it will benefit everyone. The Fed needs to step in now and quit all its petty partisan politics.
THE ELECTION CAMPAIGN THIS SPRING has been a real dull time. One would have expected more from the candidates with so many running, especially for the the County Supervisor seats. But other than a couple of forums where each recited the generic “love me, elect me” rhetoric, there hasn’t been much.
Congressman Bob Filner and Juan Vargas continued their running feud, though. Vargas is running against Mary Salas for the State Senate seat from the 40th District and is backed by Filner. Vargas is running against her.
We got word from the Salas headquarters about a Vargas volunteer starting a fight at a press conference attended by Finer and Salas last week.  We were reminded that a press conference we attended in 2006 when Filner was running against Vargas got disrupted when a campaign volunteer for Vargas stopped everything and insisted the press corps listen to what she had to say.
A little while later a  Filner campaign worker had obscenities sprayed his car. This must be a tactic Vargas likes to use, since he has continued with it if the reports are correct.
Vargas needs to straighten up his act. Too much violence and nastiness surrounds his campaign. I think I would prefer voting for someone who has much more level head than this.
The candidates have been out in force, though, making the scene at the local events. Filner, Manny Perez and several candidates for other offices attended Dr. Stephen Roeder’s retirement party last Friday. The atmosphere was festive and fun.
Dr. Roeder has helped SDSU with programs that can provide a four year education in the Valley and has helped improve the facilities on the Calexico Campus.
He helped the city renovate the Carnegie Library and provide a center for public use too.
We’re glad he had an impact and we hope his retirement bodes well for him and his family.
THE MARIACHI FESTIVAL IS ALMOST HERE. Preliminary events start next week with the concert set for the following weekend. Hildy Carrillo and the Calexico Chamber of Commerce have turned this into a major event for the Valley.
Peace.