ATTPAC's new Latinidad Festival is not just music and dance. It's also a public platform
As part of Hispanic Heritage month, the AT&T Performing Arts Center is launching the Latinidad Festival Saturday with folk dances and music. But it also includes an open-air market.
In 2018, Anita Sanchez started her company, Hecho Con Amor -- "Made with Love." The 36-year-old Dallasite organizes pop-up markets: Latin American-style mercados with food vendors and individual artisans.
In the past four years, even with the pandemic, Sanchez has put together three to four dozen markets around North Texas. She said these consciously feature Black, brown and indigenous vendors and are kept affordable.
"For the Latinidad 2022 event," Sanchez said, "we have hand-made candles, clothing, boots, Mexican candies, spicy candies. We have a vendor that's doing tacos and they make their tortillas by hand. We've got a vegan Mexican-food vendor."
Meanwhile, more than 30 vendors will be under tents around the square. The festival starts at 5 pm, so — with the tents located in shady areas — Sanchez feels there won't be much to worry about when it comes to the Dallas heat.
She sees the Latinidad Festival as not just a celebration but a platform.
"The idea is to highlight our Latinx-owned small businesses," she said. "We definitely want that feeling of community."
The idea is also to make the Latinidad Festival an annual event.
Latinidad Festival 2022, Strauss Square at the AT&T Performing Arts Center, free admission, Sept 17 at 5 pm.
UPDATE: This post was updated on Sept. 15 to reflect the fact that Latinidad is not the first festival to hold a market in Strauss Square.
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