HUMBOLDT PARK — A series of family-friendly holiday events will take over Humboldt Park’s Division Street in the coming weeks.
The Puerto Rican Cultural Center is hosting its first-ever “Puerto Rican Christmas market” at ¡WEPA! Mercado del Pueblo, 2559 W. Division St., every Saturday through Jan. 6, Three Kings Day.
Neighbors can find handmade wares, artisanal goods and specialty products from more than 15 Puerto Rican artisans and makers, according to the organization. The next market is Saturday. Each market runs from 11 a.m.-6:30 p.m.
The organization is throwing several other free holiday events also on Saturday:
- 3 p.m.: Vejigante ornament making and hot chocolate at La Casita de Don Pedro, 2625 W. Division St.
- 3 p.m.: Cookie decorating at Chucherías Tropical Creations, 2627 W. Division St.
- 3:40 p.m.: Christmas tree lighting ceremony at La Casita de Don Pedro, 2625 W. Division St.
- 4 p.m.: 16th annual Paseo Boricua parranda. Face masks are required for those who participate in the parranda, which will be dedicated to elderly people living in Teresa Roldán Apartments, 1154 N. Campbell Ave.
On Dec. 24, families are invited to take photos with costumed Three Kings at La Casita de Don Pedro. And on Jan. 6, the organization, headquartered at 2531 W. Division St., will hand out free gifts to children.
Three Kings Day, or Fest of the Epiphany, is one of the most celebrated holidays in Puerto Rico. The Christian holiday honors the biblical story of three wise men who gave gifts to baby Jesus.
The Puerto Rican Cultural Center opened ¡WEPA! Mercado del Pueblo out of an old laundromat in 2021 to help local artists and small business owners launch their careers and give Paseo Boricua — the center of Humboldt Park’s Puerto Rican community — an economic jolt.
“The money you provide for the vendors here will help our vendors, the money you spend on Paseo Boricua, whether it’s at Lily’s [Record Shop] or Nellie’s .. or at Café Colao or Janellie’s [Kitchen], it’s money that stays here. This is how you build wealth,” Executive Director Jose Lopez said at a kickoff event Wednesday.
For more information about the upcoming events, visit the Puerto Rican Cultural Center’s Facebook page.
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