SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – This weekend marked the 33rd annual Springfield Puerto Rican Parade.

22News Reporter Melissa Torres was this year’s emcee, and she spoke with parade organizers about the lasting impact of this cultural celebration in the city of firsts

There was truly so much magia boricua in the air this weekend in downtown Springfield. People came from near and far with their banderas, or flags, raised up loud and proud.

The Springfield Puerto Rican Parade is a time-honored celebration that embraces the culture, heritage, and the contributions of the Puerto Rican community in Springfield. Over the years this parade has seen exponential growth. What was once a small and intimate celebration of culture
has blossomed into an event that everyone looks forward to within the valley whether you’re Puerto Rican or not.

Parade organizers saying that every year they are taken aback by the response from the community, “Every year we progressed every year there was another hustle there was something new that was added, some improvement that was made, some reflection of a plan that didn’t go so well, says Springfield Puerto Rican Parade President, Kelvin Molina-Brantley. “Every year the group always came together trying to advance that. So it’s progressed.”

Vice Chair of the Springfield Puerto Rican Parade, Sasha Viands, telling 22News, “Seeing it grow not just as an observer, but as a participant and now as a board member has been so fulfilling and rewarding because this is how we do it, so that’s been a powerful moment for me in reflecting.”

Beyond being a celebration, the parade serves as an avenue to commemorate the Puerto Rican community’s accomplishments. It’s a testament to resilience, pride, unity, and the power of collective voices.

Even though the parade just wrapped up, the committee already has plans and ideas for next years parade on September 15th of 2024.

Local News

Melissa Torres is a reporter who has been a part of the 22News team since 2021. Follow Melissa on X @melissatorrestv and view her bio to see more of her work.