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Iowa’s Latino Heritage Festival unveils new website, poster contest winner

DES MOINES, IA – Iowa’s Latino Heritage Festival has a revamped website that is easier to navigate and shares more information about the festival.

The website,, details the entertainment, volunteer information, vendor requirements and much more. This year’s festivities will take place from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sept. 23 and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sept. 24 at Western Gateway Park in downtown Des Moines.

Each year, about 10,000 people from across Iowa come together to celebrate the contributions Iowa’s Latinos have made to their communities and to celebrate their culture and history.

Des Moines is a day drive from almost anywhere in the state, said Joe Gonzalez, executive director of Latino Resources Inc., the umbrella organizations that oversees the festival.

“We hope Iowans from across the state will join us for this special event and the opportunity to experience Latin American culture and history,” he said.

The marketing materials for this year’s festival will feature the design of Shannon Rodriguez, a senior at Grand View University in Des Moines.

“We were drawn to Shannon’s colorful design and like the simplicity of its aesthetics,” Gonzalez said.

Attendees to this year’s festival will see traditional Latin American foods from countries that include Cuba, Dominican Republic, Brazil, Peru, Venezuela and Argentina, and a variety of entertainment from martial arts performers to folkloric dancers, artists’ works and displays about the history of Latin American cultures. New this year are more entertainment opportunities for children and more emphasis on healthy lifestyles.

There will be mini soccer demonstrations for children, visits from Latina princesses and other activities that will be announced at a later date. The health village will double in size and offer blood typing and blood pressure readings, and there will be more cooking demonstrations showing how to make healthy Latino meals.

“We wanted to offer something for everyone from our youngest to oldest visitors,” Gonzalez said. “We also know that obesity, diabetes and other conditions affect our community at a higher rate. We want our festival to serve as an educational tool to address some of these issues and to begin to combat them.”

The festival will be promoted through social media sites Instagram and Facebook with #ialatinoheritagefestival.

Cost to attend is $5 for adults and $1 for children 12 and younger.

For more information, visit, or contact Melissa Walker at 515-681-7731 or Visit Iowa’s Latino Heritage Festival on Facebook and #ialatinoheritagefestival on Instagram.

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