Fiesta del Tlaquepaque celebrates Mexican Independence Day

The 33rd annual Fiesta del Tlaquepaque will take place at Tlaquepaque on Saturday, Sept. 9, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. This traditional celebration began shortly after Tlaquepaque opened its doors in 1972.

The conceptual history of Tlaquepaque is truly a story of creator Abe Miller's love for beauty and perfection. Under the influence of the lively creative arts scene in Mexico, it struck him that Sedona was a natural location for a living arts community Š a village where artisans work out in full view and live on-site as well. It worked in Mexico; it could work here. He'd call it Tlaquepaque after the colorful Mexican city on the outskirts of Guadalajara. Tlaquepaque is a word from the Nahuatl Native Indian language - the ancient language of the Aztecs meaning the "best of everything."

The first year, Fiesta del Tlaquepaque featured a pig roast that the community attended. From this humble beginning "Fiesta" has grown into an all day celebration that reflects the spirit and joy of Mexican culture. Amidst the colorful swirl of dancers in costume and the upbeat and intricate sounds of Latin influenced music, visitors to Fiesta del Tlaquepaque are in for an unforgettable experience.

The ambiance of Tlaquepaque combined with the festive atmosphere of strolling mariachis transports visitors to another place and time that is unmatched in the Southwest. Throughout the day the celebration in honor of Mexican Independence Day will feature the sounds of Nosotros, roaming mariachi group Mariachi Colonial, and the Flamenco music and dance of Mosaico Flamenco.

The renowned Ballet Folklorico Mexicapan will take center stage at Plaza la Fuente several times throughout the day. The dance ensemble creates a stunning production through the use of colorful authentic costume and indigenous and European influenced dance.

In addition, the Roping Reynosos and Oliver the Clown will entertain delighting visitors of all ages. Face painting will be available for children from noon to 4 p.m. Traditional food and refreshments will be available from Tlaquepaque restaurants El Rincon Restaurante Mexicano, The Secret Garden, and Oak Creek Brewery & Grill.

Free shuttle service will run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. between Tlaquepaque and the Uptown municipal parking lot located on Apple between Jordan and 89A. Admission to the event is free.

"The Art and Soul of Sedona," Tlaquepaque is the home to more than 40 shops and galleries and four restaurants. For more information, contact Tlaquepaque at (928) 282-4838 or visit www.tlaq.com.

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