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Westfield celebrates Puerto Rican heritage with flag-raising

According to a news release from the City of Westfield, the Puerto Rican community has had a ceremony to raise the flag of Puerto Rico on the grounds of Westfield City Hall since 1995.

The ceremony will begin at 1:00 p.m. and will have an official flag of Puerto Rico that is flown in the island’s municipalities and at the Puerto Rico Capitol building in San Juan. The national anthems of the United States and of Puerto Rico, and “La Borinqueña” will be sung by Adrian Colombani, Alisa Soto, and Ariana Roldan.

This year’s honoree at the event is Awilda Colombani, who has been a successful businesswoman for 30 years in downtown Westfield and leader in La Comunidad of St. Mary’s Church and attributes all of her accomplishments to God.

After the flag-raising, the community will gather at the YMCA for a traditional Puerto Rican meal that is catered by Sabor Latino of Chicopee with desserts by members of the Westfield Latino community. DJ music will also be provided by Doug Sweeney. The event will also feature the cultural group Bomba de Aquí with lead dancer Brendaliz Cepeda, who is the granddaughter of the patriarch and matriarch of bomba and plena, Don Rafael Cepeda and Doña Caridad Brenes.

At the event, there will also be tables featuring City Clerk Kaitlyn Bruce with Voter Registrations, Becky Gonzalez with the En3rgy Up fresh organic juices and ginger shots, and the MA Urban Canopy where they will be offering free trees to downtown residents. WEPRA will hold a raffle for a handmade domino table.

The Westfield Puerto Rican Association (WEPRA) celebrates culture during National Hispanic Heritage Month, and honors families who settled in Westfield in the mid-20th century, and these families founded the Puerto Rican community in the city. Original Article:

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