South Florida, like Cuban coffee, is steeped in Latin tradition. And whether you enjoy your cortadito or cafecito, or the culture of Cuba, the Caribbean, Mexico, or South America, all conjure images of warmth, vitality, and delicious food and drinks.
Latin and Latin American music, dancing, the arts, and even the coffee offer invitations to relax and enjoy this month's festivities celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month. September 15 through October 15 is festival heaven but also a great time for movies, panel discussions, lectures, and other activities throughout Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade Counties.
The following is a shortlist of Hispanic Heritage Month events in the tri-county area:
Wednesday, September 18
The ensemble Cortadito — New Times' best Latin act of 2019 — will play Fort Lauderdale for the last time this month when the group makes its Bar Rita debut before heading into a string of Miami dates. The band performs the music of early-20th-century Cuba. Playing styles ranging from son montuno to guaracha, boleros, nengon, and bolero son, this energetic group takes listeners back to a time when Trio Matamoros and Ignacio Piniero ruled the Cuban music world. This was the era when popular music was Cuban music and son montuno influenced melodies worldwide. From time to time, Cortadito is backed by a variety of guest musicians, which gives the group a sound reminiscent of the Buena Vista Social Club. 6 p.m. Wednesday at 1401 S. Andrews Ave., Fort Lauderdale; barritaftl.com. Admission is free.
Friday, September 20
In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, Oakland Park Latin Fest is a community celebration of Latin culture and its music, dance, and art. Among the highlights is the Taste of Latin Fest food court, which will offer fare from Latin American restaurants in Oakland Park. Enjoy El Guanaco's traditional pig roast while delighting in music and dancing courtesy of the Latin band Cache and the dance school Art of Salsa. 6 to 10 p.m. Friday at Jaco Pastorius Park, 4000 N. Dixie Hwy., Oakland Park; oaklandparkfl.gov. Admission is free.
Saturday, September 21
Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month when the City of Miramar hosts the Latin Music Festival as part of its Hispanic Heritage Month festivities. Dance the night away to live music by Rey Ruiz, Lissette Morales, and Reinier Bonachea's Orchestra. 7 to 11 p.m. Saturday at Miramar Amphitheater at Regional Park, 16801 Miramar Pwky., Miramar. Admission is free with RSVP via eventbrite.com.
Friday, September 27
The Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami will present an expanded event to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month as part of its Jazz at MOCA series.
Singer-songwriter Leslie Cartaya, who will be joined by salsa dancers for the Friday-night event, is among the highlights. Born in Cuba and steeped early in Cuban and Brazilian music, Cartaya vocalizes Caribbean, Afro-American, Afro-Latin, and Latin American musical rhythms to create a harmonious fusion.
The museum will also hold the panel discussion “What It Means to be Hispanic in America Today," moderated by Antonio Martinez, former district director of Miami-Dade County Public Schools. Also, O, Miami will be on hand with poetry readings and Zip Odes — the creative, short tributes to South Florida zip codes made famous on WLRN. 6 p.m. (panel discussion) and 8 p.m. (entertainment) Friday at MOCA Plaza, 770 NE 125th St., North Miami; mocanomi.org. Admission is free.
Friday, October 4
The eighth-annual Latinos Salud Hispanic Heritage Food Bazaar at ArtServe (Fort Lauderdale Library) will celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month and commemorate National Latinx AIDS Awareness Day. Come as a guest or compete for prizes while representing your country. Each country with at least three participants will receive a table to decorate and display local food and decorations. 6 p.m. Friday at 1350 E. Sunrise Blvd., Fort Lauderdale. Admission is free.
Saturday, October 5
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To celebrate South Florida’s rich diversity and its growing collection of Latin American art, the Norton Museum will hold its inaugural Latinx Community Day. The event will present Kuyayky, a rare majority-female quintet playing traditional Andean and precolonial and colonial Peruvian and Latin American music. Also slated to perform are the Latin Grammy-winning pianist/songwriter and producer Pepe Montes y Su Conjunto, the Taíno cultural group Esencia de Boriken with percussionist Pedro Vilanova, and Tamboricua Miami. The museum will also host film screenings, art-making workshops, and tours in Spanish and English of the special exhibition "The Body Says, I Am a Fiesta: The Figure in Latin America Art." Noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, at 1450 S. Dixie Hwy., West Palm Beach; 561-832-5196; norton.org. Admission is free.
Two of Miami’s top Latin funk acts, Electric Piquete and the Spam Allstars, will headline Noche Latina at Guanabanas Island Restaurant & Bar. This is the fourth anniversary for the recurring Latin music series at the popular Jupiter waterfront restaurant, bar, and live music venue. Twice named New Times' Best Latin Band, Electric Piquete will open with a set from 4-7 p.m. The band's catchy sound mixes Latin soul and boogaloo with American funk, jazz, and rock. The Latin Grammy-nominated Spam Allstars, synonymous with Miami’s Latin funk sound, take the stage from 9-11 p.m. Founded by musician, producer, and musicologist Andrew Yeomanson, AKA DJ Le Spam, the Spam Allstars make for a musical amalgamation that's part hip-hop, part funk, and part electronica. 4 p.m. and 9 p.m., Saturday, at 960 N. Highway A1A, Jupiter; 561-747-8878; guanabanas.com. Admission is free. Must be 21 and over for the late set.
The City of West Palm Beach will host the inaugural Latin Quarter West Palm Beach 2019 Hispanic Heritage Month Parade, celebrating the histories and cultures of residents from more than 20 countries. 9 a.m. Saturday from Bunker Road to St. Juliana Church, West Palm Beach; latinquarterwpb.org. Admission is free with RSVP via eventbrite.com.