It's fiesta time at the Canyon, Tusayan

Event to coincide with national celebration

<br>Patrick Whitehurst/WGCN<br>
Employees of Sophie's Mexican Kitchen, pictured above with John Dillon, second from the left, will provide food for Friday's Tusayan fiesta event. Dillon is director and chief operating officer for the Western Discovery Museum.

<br>Patrick Whitehurst/WGCN<br> Employees of Sophie's Mexican Kitchen, pictured above with John Dillon, second from the left, will provide food for Friday's Tusayan fiesta event. Dillon is director and chief operating officer for the Western Discovery Museum.

TUSAYAN, Ariz. - Organizers in Tusayan are offering a number of wonderful events for their Tusayan fiesta celebration, held as part of the Grand Canyon National Park's Día de la Familia, which also coincides with National Hispanic Heritage Month. The Tusayan event will be held from 4-10 p.m. Friday at Camper Village, located across Highway 64 from the IMAX Theater. The band Sona Dores Musical will also perform during the event.

The fiesta will feature a free barbecue, games for kids, soccer displays, piñatas and more. The event is sponsored by the Western Discovery Museum in Tusayan, according to John Dillon, director and chief operating officer of the museum.

"We're happy to help sponsor the event," Dillon said. "The discovery museum is geared toward western cultures. We just thought this would be a great way to celebrate the Hispanic heritage, a national event, and we just wanted to do our part."

Dillon said he hopes to see the event become an annual one in the area.

"It's the Tusayan fiesta," Dillon said. "It's in conjunction with the park's event. Our event is going to be on the 25th. It's really part of the whole event of celebrating the Hispanic culture and families and everything for the weekend. Our event is going to kick it all off on Friday."

Beer and more will also be available for purchase during the fiesta, Dillon said.

"That's the only thing for sale. Everything else is free," he said, adding that food for the event will be provided by the Tusayan-based Sophie's Mexican Kitchen.

A highlight of the Tusayan event will be a keynote address by retired Arizona Governor and former U.S. Ambassador for El Salvador, Bolivia and Argentina, Raúl Hector Castro. Castro, in his 90's, is scheduled to speak between 6 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.

"He's going to be kind of the keynote speaker and honored guest," Dillon said. "He has an institute and he spends a lot of time in the Hispanic community, trying to energize them to be proud of their heritage and their culture, proud of their language and everything that goes along with it."

For more information on the Tusayan fiesta, contact Dillon at (928) 638-0333. To learn more about Día de la Familia or for a schedule of the Grand Canyon Park's events, contact District Interpreter David Smith at (928) 638-7765.

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