Fiesta Latina to bring Latino community’s tastes and sounds to downtown

COLUMBUS, Ind. — Thiago Oliveira and his six bandmates seem to be the perfect group for Su Casa’s and Tu Futuro’s annual Fiesta Latina Saturday along Fourth Street in downtown Columbus. The Brazilian group’s name, after all, is Sabada, a slight Portugese derivative of the word Saturday.

“It recalls a day when people are getting together and enjoying themselves,” Oliveira said.

He and his sidekicks, who performed here last year, once again aim to help a couple thousand people or more to enjoy themselves to the hilt via samba sounds from 2 to 3:30 p.m. at the event highlighting a Brazilian and Mexican theme.

The free admission gathering stretching from noon to 10 p.m. overall ”celebrates the rich culture of Latin America; showcasing Latino musicians, dancers, artisans, and chefs from around the region,” according to organizers’ promotional materials.

Proceeds from the event go to help Su Casa “serve its Latino community, so that all Latinos feel welcome and safe, with equal access to opportunities that encourage a sense of pride and belonging,” according to the website at sucasaindiana.org/fiesta-latina/.

Last year’s event attracted an estimated 2,000 people with a few hours still to spare along a very crowded Fourth Street by suppertime. Mexican consul Daniel Aguado-Ornelas proclaimed a strong sense of unity over the gathering by early evening.

“Tonight,” he said from the stage microphone, “we are all Latino.”

The festival includes dance favorites Ballet Folkorico Mosaicos, a mariachi band, a group Zumba exercise session and enough food to satisfy nearly any appetite.