Rincon Latino Fiesta is back to share the food and culture of Pensacola's Latino community – Pensacola News Journal

This weekend, the Viva Chile Café restaurant will host its Rincon Latino Fiesta!, a celebration of — and an introduction to — the rich Latin culture of Pensacola.
The event will take place from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday at 6201 Tippin Ave. 
Patricia Rojas, the owner of Viva Chile Café, wanted to create the festival to share the culture of her native Chile with others in the Pensacola community.
“I feel like I need to give something to the community,” Rojas said. “What I do best is show my culture and tell my friends, my American friends, who I am, where I come from, what we do in our community, what we do in our countries, what kind of food we eat, what kind of activities we have and everything related to us.”
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Rojas came to the U.S. from Santiago, Chile, with her two children and her husband in 2005. None of them spoke English but they were able to find a job at a convenience store, where the entire family eventually worked. They received permanent residence and then citizenship in 2019 thanks to the help of the owner of the store. 
When the store closed down and the family was thinking about its next move, Rojas’ oldest son, Diego, suggested they should sell churrascos, a popular Chilean sandwich. After researching how to start a business, they were able to purchase a charter bus to turn into a food truck. They started the business on Tippin Avenue and hired more people to help run the food truck. 
They had the first Rincon Latino Fiesta in 2019, but took the next two years off because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Rojas is excited to bring it back this year to celebrate all the Latin cultures in the area. The event will feature seven food trucks all serving foods from different countries and cultures such as Mexico, El Salvador, Chile, Venezuela, Peru and Puerto Rico.
Peruvian food truck Jumping Lomo will be there selling food like chaufa, a Peruvian style fried rice, and the eatery’s signature jumping lomo, a sautéed top sirloin steak. Arepas Bar, which serves Venezuelan food like cachapas, antojitos and arepas, will also be on hand. 
There will 10 vendors selling and showcasing everything from handmade jewelry, to Venezuelan clothing, to Zumba fitness classes. The fiesta will have music from DJ DavidC and other entertainment like animal balloons, face painting and prize drawings. 
Rojas wanted to make sure to diversify what foods and culture would be presented at the festival so people in the community can see the Latino community is vast, supports one another and the wider community, and loves living in the United States.
“What is important for me is to show the American community that Latinos are here living (among) them,” Rojas said. “We can support each other and we can give something back to the community.”


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