New York City (and, in particular, the Bronx) has the highest populations of Puerto Ricans in the world: more than 10% of the population. So if you’re looking for a feeling of home, and don’t want to break the bank, then spending a weekend here is a good place to start. As well as holding a special parade to celebrate those of Puerto Rican heritage, New York and neighboring New Jersey also make the most of the local Puerto Rican culture, being home to numerous great restaurants and tourist sights. Here is how to spend a weekend in this part of the states.
Visit El Museo del Barrio
El Museo Barrio was established as a place for Puerto Rican and Latinx artists in New York to have their work seen by a larger audience. Regardless of the time of year that you are visiting there is a vast permanent collection of works from prominent Latinx artists. However, if you are arriving in time for the Puerto Rican Parade then you will also be in time to see their exhibit, Estamos Bien – La Trienal. This show will feature more than forty artists of Latinx descent, all working at the present moment. The exhibition has been in place physically since the summer of last year and will remain until at least Autumn this year. For those who can’t make the journey an online version of the exhibitions being launched at the end of the month.
Eat, Drink and Dance at the Puerto Rican Parade
The roots of the parade begin back in the 1950s when many Puerto Rican migrants arrived in New York. Wanting to make their good intentions known, and to help themselves to feel at home, like the Irish and Italian communities before them, they decided to hold a parade. This originally was called the Hispanic Parade and included largely those from Cuba, as well as Puerto Ricans. It took until 1958 for the Puerto Rican parade to fully come into being and it has remained ever since. This year’s parade is on the 13th of June, so the weather should be bright, sunny, and warm. If you plan to dive headfirst into the action then consider carnival dress, or at the very least wear the red, blue, and white of the Puerto Rican flag. The event attracts millions of gatherers, so arrive in town the day before and don’t plan on leaving too quickly. Enjoy the food, drink, and music. The celebrations are always good-natured, welcoming and a true picture of Puerto Rican culture.
Cool Down in New Jersey
If the hustle and bustle of the Puerto Rican Parade has got you craving somewhere a little quieter, but still with a busy city feel, then take a quick trip down to New Jersey. Famed for its casinos, you can get yourself feeling prepared for Atlantic City by playing at some nj casinos online on the trip down. Once you make it to New Jersey, just before you head off to the casino, try to make time for a stop at the Newark Public Library. Each year this library holds a Latino Celebration and whilst last year’s event was broadcast via Zoom, this year’s event is set to run in person. Expect prestigious guest speakers, notable Latinx authors, and artists too.