By Clyde Hughes | AC JosepH Media
ATLANTIC CITY — Proclaiming that the Atlantic City Latino Festival is “back to business” after bouncing back from the COVID-19 pandemic, thousands packed into historic Bader Field Saturday (Sept. 17) to listen to music, enjoy Hispanic-themed cuisine and collect information from a wide variety of resource vendors.
The Hispanic Association of Atlantic County started ramping back up the AC Latino Music Festival last year, but this year the crowds were larger and more enthusiastic, enjoying a diversity of entertainment befitting the Latin American culture.
“So far, we had a count of more than 4,500 people and we haven’t even had our headliner in yet,” HAAC Vice President Jessica Grullon told Front Runner New Jersey late Saturday afternoon after appearing on stage with HAAC President Bert Lopez, Atlantic City Mayor Marty Small, Sr., City Councilman Muhammad “Anjum” Zia and Atlantic City School Board member Subrata Chowdhury.
When Bert Lopez asked Small for “extra time” at Bader Field because the festival was running a little behind, Small smiled and said “approved” to the roar of the crowd.
In deed, people continued to pour into Bader Field at 6 p.m. as the entertainment and celebration continued. The Latino Festival is one of the major fundraisers of the Hispanic Association of Atlantic County, a portion which will go to scholarships.
“We are super-excited to say that things are back to business,” Grullon said. “We are excited to report 44 community resource members here to give information to our community. We have over 12 food trucks. We are excited to not only to provide entertainment but being able to give the community information so they can thrive.”
Grullon said that with the turnout, she believes the community is “finally” being heard.
“A lot of times, they felt they were not being listened to or respected by city officials and the casinos,” she said. “Now people see that they are indeed a buying power, a force to be reckoned with and we are not going to continue this from now on but will do this for years to come.”
Some of the major sponsors of this year’s event included the City of Atlantic City, the Casino Reinvestment District Authority, Meet AC, Stockton University, Atlantic City Electric, Corona Extra, Atlantic Cape Community College, the South Jersey Cultural Association and Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind.
Here are some of the photos and videos from the 2020 Atlantic City Latino Festival. Photos and video by Meredith Winner, Mer-Made Photography.
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