This Father’s Day, a Mariachi band in Boyle Heights brought joy to the neighborhood with their “Serenata para papá,” translating to “a serenade for dad.”
The magical performance was a way to celebrate all the dads in East Los Angeles, and as the band moved along, you could hear people shouting, "Happy Father's Day!"
Miguel Santiago, Assembly member of the 53rd District, co-hosted this event. The father of two lives in Boyle Heights, where mariachi bands are woven into the fabric of his Mexican American culture.
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"You have a mariachi in the morning sing and brighten up the day so that's what we're doing. We use them for birthdays, weddings, quinceañeras, baptisms," Santiago said. Basically, for any celebratory moment.
Many communities have been through a lot recently, living through a pandemic, economic struggle and more.
The mariachis and people from Weingart East LA YMCA, Boyle Heights Neighborhood Council and the University of Southern California marched from East 4th and Chicago streets to keep the festive feeling going when it’s needed most.
One of the father’s highlighted Sunday was Jose Carreon, who got to enjoy the surprise on his 100th birthday.
Fathers of all ages couldn’t help feeling overwhelmed with emotion as songs drew them out of their homes at a safe social distance, including Angel Portillo and his son.
"It's awesome. It's a good support to the community of Boyle Heights, I liked it a lot," he said with his son in his arms.