Springfield Puerto Rican Parade returned in-person on Sunday

“It means the world, it’s a proud day for Puerto Ricans. It’s just a day of pride,” said Springfield Ward 6 City Councilor Victor Davila.
Published: Sep. 18, 2022 at 10:43 PM EDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) - Hundreds of people took to the streets of Springfield on Sunday for the annual Puerto Rican Parade. Western Mass News was there to experience all the excitement.

“This is always one of the things that we’re looking forward to every year, to be here and support our country. I’m really excited that finally we get to be here and be a part of it,” said Idaliz Voorhees.

After two years of virtual events due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Springfield Puerto Rican Parade returned in-person to the North End on Sunday afternoon.

Idaliz Voorhees told Western Mass News she watched her niece in the parade as it traveled down Main Street beginning at 11:00 a.m.

“You know, just come together to unite and say we’re proud to be Puerto Rican, so it’s very exciting to be here and participate,” said Voorhees.

The event also fell during Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs from September 15th to October 15th.

Ana Nater said, “As an educator we are having this time of the month to let our students know about their ancestors, their roots, know a little bit more about the Hispanic culture. So we’re going to have a whole month to celebrate.”

After the parade, Springfield City Councilor Victor Davila helped the party roll on at Tú Casa.

“It means the world, it’s a proud day for Puerto Ricans. It’s just a day of pride,” said Davila.

Davila told Western Mass News the post-parade party also functioned as a way to recognize José Morales, an Army veteran of Puerto Rican descent, who currently works for the city of Springfield as a paramedic.

“I’m from Springfield so to get recognized with the award from the city of Springfield, I think is phenomenal. I would never expect that in my whole lifetime,” said Morales.

And as the country of Puerto Rico braces for ‘catastrophic’ flooding as Hurricane Fiona makes landfall, Davila shared a message with the community.

“I ask you to keep people in Puerto Rico in your prayers as we are facing another hurricane and I just ask you to pray for people back in the homeland,” said Davila.