You may want to organize a little getaway to Queens—it’s a cheap ticket this week for a tour of the other Americas at Flushing Meadows–Corona Park. New York City’s second-largest outdoor space at 1,255 acres, the park has long been an oasis for the borough’s immigrants, especially Hispanics, playing host to impromptu soccer matches, backyard-style family barbecues, and lazy summer siestas. The Latino Cultural Festival, in its eighth year, celebrates this growing population by gathering a slew of artists and performers right here in the park where a giant model globe was erected in 1964 for the World’s Fair. This time, it’s mostly a hemispheric celebration—not only Puerto Rico and Mexico, but also the likes of Colombia, Argentina, and the Dominican Republic add some sabor to the mix. Highlights include Mexican rockera Julieta Venegas, an accordionist with two Grammys under her belt; Ralph Irizarry’s eight-piece powerhouse SonCafé, which performs by way of Puerto Rico, Cuba, and New York; and a spoken-word night hosted by Nuyorican wordsmith Emanuel Xavier. For an extra dose of all things Hispanic, check out the New York International Latino Film Festival (nylatinofilm.com), happening simultaneously across the river through August 1.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on July 20, 2004