Ohio's South of the Border Festival returns this weekend for its ninth year in Perrysburg Heights with Mexican performers, authentic cuisine, and entertainment for all ages.
The festival, held tonight through Sunday in Perrysburg Heights Community Park, 12882 Jefferson St., Perrysburg, celebrates the area's Mexican cultural traditions, said Anita Serda, festival coordinator.
Serda, co-founder of the nonprofit Perrsyburg Heights Community Association, said the festival serves as an annual fund-raiser for the association.
"The festival is bigger this year, with more bands, more rides, and more vendors, and a variety of food," she said.
Much of the food is prepared by a group of about eight women who call themselves the Guadalupana Society at St. Rose Church in Perrsyburg. These women, assisted by "an upcoming junior group" of about 10 other women, have been cooking all week in preparation for the festival, Serda said. She said chicken and bean burritos and tamales are always crowd favorites.
Other attractions include about 30 vendors, carnival-style rides, and a new children's activity area with games, crafts, and a fun Haunted House for ages 2-6. At 10:30 p.m. tomorrow, a grito contest - a grito is a yell of appreciation in Mexican culture - will be open for all ages.
A 12:15 p.m. Sunday, a bilingual mass conducted by St. Rose Church officials will be celebrated on the festival grounds, followed by a 1:30 p.m. jalapeno-eating contest. Festival entertainment, to perform on several stages, is as follows:
●Adrian group Bad Boyz, 6:15- 8:45 p.m.
●Adrian group Autoridad, 9 p.m. to midnight.
●Bowling Green State University student and faculty group La Revancha, 4-5:30 p.m.
●Fifty-member dance troupe Imagenes Mexicanas led by director Taylor Balderas, 5:30-6 p.m.
●Maximo, 6-8:45 p.m.
●Troy, Mich., group Patricia y Carino Musical, 9 p.m. to midnight.
●Rap group Triple Threat, 10:45 p.m.
●Los Cuatro Vientos de Jimmy Bejarano, who is celebrating 50 years in the music industry, with his son, Jimmy Bejarano, Jr., who recently was honored as the 2004 bajo sexto player of the year at the annual Tejano Music Awards, 1:45-3:45 p.m.
●Groupo Illusion, 4-6 p.m.
Ohio's South of the Border Festival runs tonight through Sunday at Perrysburg Heights Community Park, 12882 Jefferson St., Perrysburg. Hours are 6 to midnight tonight, 4 p.m. to midnight tomorrow, and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $4 for people ages 13 and up, $3 for seniors, $1 for ages 6-12, and free for ages 5 and under. Free parking is available at the O-I Development Park off Levis Drive and free shuttle service to the festival will be provided. Information: 419-874-4529.
Contact Rhonda B. Sewell at: