Oct. 8, 2005 Residents poured into the Agriculture Fairgrounds Friday night as the festivities marking in the end of Hispanic Heritage month got into full swing. Friends launched conversations in Spanish and the Crucian dialect; people waited in line to taste traditional Puerto Rican fare and children's eyes were lit up like the brightly colored spinning toys they enticed their parents to purchase.
VI/PR Friendship Queen Frances D. Ruiz, Vera Falu Hope, festival committee chairperson and Lt. Vargrave A. Richards cut the ribbon officially opening this year's village.
This year's theme is "A Strong, Vibrant and Colorful Friendship."
"Tonight we all honor and recognize our friends and relatives living in friendship," Falu-Hope said.
Richards said he was honored to open the village and celebrate the heritage and people who have made a difference in this community. He said the Puerto Rican and Virgin Islands community is intertwined. "We have incorporated the food the music and much of what we do is influenced by the Puerto Rican culture," Richards said. "We are fused as a people".
The village is named in honor of 63-year-old Angel "Chico" Morales former owner of Chico's bar and Restaurant, which he established in Frederiksted in the early 1950s. He later opened the Villa Morales restaurant and guesthouse, now managed by his daughter, Angie.
The festival committee honored the following people for their contributions to the community:
— Lawrence Bastian, former Frederiksted administrator, former Crucian Christmas Festival president, American Legion District 10 commander, American Legion Bramble Berkley Post No. 133 commander, 10th District of the Department of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands American Legion and American Association of Retired Persons state president.
— Dr. Raymond Cintron, who specializes in gastroenterology and liver disease and is the former president of the Juan F Luis hospital medical staff. Cintron presently works at the Herbert Grigg facility.
— Ana L. Diaz Ramirez, retired deputy director of the Virgin Islands Internal Revenue Bureau.
— Anita L. Christian, retired V.I. Police sergeant.
— Richard A. Schrader, former Golden Grove Correctional Facility warden, recipient of the V.I. Humanities Council "Humanist of the Year Award" and published author of several culturally conscious works of prose and short stories.
–Julio Delgado Rucci, former Rotary president.
Don't miss the rest of the festivities as they continue Saturday evening and through the holiday weekend.
— 8 10 p.m. Liquid Sounds, St. Croix
— 10 12 p.m. Cool Session, St. John
— 12 2 a.m. Jose Esteban y su Orquestra de Puerto Rico
— 7 9 p.m. DJ Brache and Sabor Latino
— 9:30 11:30 p.m. Express Band, St. Croix
— 12 2 a.m. Orlando Pabellon y su Sonora, Salsa, Puerto Rico
— 3 7 p.m. Educational program featuring:
— St. Croix Majorettes; Quadrille Dancers and Grupo Alegre by Pearl B. Larsen School;
— Los Angeles de Machuchal; Quelbe band, Corale and poetry reading by Eulalie Rivera Professional Development School; Music in Motion dancers and De Akshan Band
— 7 9 p.m. Caribbean Fusion, St. Croix Educational Complex
— 9 12 p.m. Excitement Band, St. Croix
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