People gather during the mural dedication. Valley Daily Post image
Scenes From Espanola Is Our Beloved Community Event
ESPAÑOLA – This past weekend a group of community organizations cosponsored a series of events to foster community healing and tolerance in the greater Española Valley. On Sunday the events culminated with a series of activities at the Hunter Ford building which is being converted into an agriculture food hub and arts hub.
Sunday’s events included a memorial service for Victor Vialpando, the Española youth who was killed in a tragic police shooting in 2014, followed by a mural dedication, performances from local youth, and a youth healing circle led by Arianne Malmud Gahzi.
The day closed with a leaders roundtable discussion and meal to discuss ways to build on the weekend’s progress and how the community can come together to provide more services and events, like Sunday’s with minimum infrastructure and maximum cooperation.
Community leaders who attended included Senator Richard Martinez, Mayor Alice Lucero, City Clerk Anna Squires, Rodger Gonzales with SIete Del Norte, Christopher Madrid with Rio Arriba County, several local arts organizations and others.
Roger Montoya, the lead event organizer for the weekend’s events said “I am pleased to live in a community where so many organizations are willing to collaborate on a project like this. It was so heartwarming that everyone was willing to come together under the banner of Espanola is our beloved community.”
See below for some images of the events
Youth healing circle. VDP image
Rose Camenetti leads the Espanola Main Street Community Choir.VDP image
(WOR) Warriors Of Resistance, a subgroup from Moving Arts Española, performs a dance in memory of youth who have passed away. (name corrected to “WOR”. Originally had been published as “WAR”) VDP image
The group opted to perform in the rain while the audience stayed dry and watched through the open garage doors. VDP image
One of New Mexico’s premier breakdance crews by Ricky Rodriguez. The members were very close to Victor Vilapando so came out to support the event. Group members who performed include Alejandra Avila, Zeke Farell, Ricky Rodriguez, Ricky Rodriguez Jr. (on shoulders) and Tyron Clemens. VDP image