Thousands attend La Fiesta del Pueblo in downtown Raleigh

Wake County News

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Thousands filled Fayetteville Street in downtown Raleigh Sunday for La Fiesta del Pueblo.

“Everyone’s just coming together, we’re just having fun right now and showing a cause here,” Raleigh resident Morelia Argueta said.

The festival marked a day filled with food, art, music and different resources for the Triangle Latinx community.

“I think, with the political climate, it’s especially nice to say, ‘Hey, we’re here in North Carolina’,” said Michelle Bermeo Betancourt, Development Coordinator for El Pueblo. “We’re community. We’re your neighbors. We’re your friends.”

For Chris Guevara, the festival has become a tradition.

“Really, it’s the culmination of all the culture and heritage in just one convenient location,” Guevara said. “It’s definitely a tumultuous time, and during these time periods, there’s a lot of fear and anxiety that runs through our community because given the climate of what’s going on in today’s news, it’s difficult to find a break from that.”

Parts of the festival touched on issues related to legal and illegal immigration.

At one point, a crowd could be seen gathered around a piñata representing “ICE” — the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.

“A lot of folks do feel targeted and do feel some kind of way about ICE,” immigration attorney Juan Arreola said.

Arreola spent the day talking with people about immigration rights.

“A lot of conversations have revolved around ICE,” he said.

As symbolism took hold across the festival, Arreola and Guevara said they believe it’s important to take action.

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