LYNNWOOD, Wash., July 17, 2022 – Hundreds attended the Afro-Latino Festival that returned for its eleventh year in Lynnwood at Silver Creek Family Church to celebrate Afro-Latino heritage and culture on Saturday, July 16.
From clothing and jewelry to freshly pressed agua de coco and hand-pressed crepes, attendees enjoyed a family friendly and alcohol-free event. The festival partnered with Silver Creek Family Church offering their grounds and Community Transit to make Saturday’s event a reality.
“It is bigger every year. Everyone is enjoying the festival and it will be better and bigger next year,” said Event organizer Karina Gasperin, a Lynnwood resident of over 21 years originally from Veracruz, Mexico. “This is the only Afro-Latino event in the county. Thank you to all those who attended.”
“It was really nice to see some many different people getting together and enjoying themselves,” Gasperin shared.
Most of the vendors appearing at the festival found their space through Gasperin’s vast contribution in the Latin communities of Snohomish County, including her own television show, Actitud Latino, which premiered in 2008. Hers was the first television show aimed at the Latino community in Washington State, according to Gasperin.
According to Pew Research Center, a quarter of all U.S. Latinos self-identify as Afro-Latino, Afro-Caribbean or of African descent with roots in Latin America. During Latin America’s colonial period, about 15 times as many African slaves were taken to Spanish and Portuguese colonies than to the U.S. which explains who some 130 million people of African descent live in Latin America, making up roughly a quarter of the total population.
Lynnwood Mayor Christine Frizzell along with Lynnwood councilwoman Julieta Altamirano-Crosby and RSJ Coordinator Douglas Raiford were among the many attending the festival.
Aside from the vendors and food stands, Latino Twist played an assortment of live Latin music from bachata, meringue, to salsa, urging attendees to get up and dance.
For more information about the Afro-Latino Festival, visit AfrolatinoFestival.org.