Posts Tagged ‘Santiago Jimenez’

Austin conjunto festival: 25 years of bringing happiness

conjunto t-shirtsHappy music makes for happy people and happy feet. The Austin conjunto festival marked its 25th anniversary on Sunday, May 3, established by Johnny Degollado all those years ago, when people first gathered in July in the heat, but in the shade of Parque Zaragoza, to hear and dance to the many rhythms of the accordion, bajo sexto, and other customary members of a traditional conjunto, so complex yet simple enough to set up in about five minutes.

The festival and dance contest were a happy component of the tenth Fiestas Patrias of Austin celebration of Cinco de Mayo. The weather was more than cooperative under the shade of the trees and the pavilion at Fiesta Gardens, with a beautiful breeze playing as children scampered and people of all ages danced and danced. Seven conjuntos were on the bill; we could be present for the first two only: Conjunto Aztlan and Santiago Jimenez, Jr.

This event is always perfect for music-lovers of all ages. See still images and unedited videos from this year’s festival and resolve to attend next year.

Conjunto fest today: dance your heart out ’til 10 pm

Head right over to Fiesta Gardens and you’ll be in time to take part in the dance contest at the Cinco de Mayo conjunto event. Santiago Jimenez, Jr., has taken the stage and there are more conjuntos to come. Entrance is $7 for adults. Parking is free. There are free carnations for the ladies, in honor of Mother’s Day. Other freebies were fans, frisbees, and pencils. There’s no need to dine ahead of time, because there’s plenty of food to accompany the various liquid refreshments. Bring a folding chair or be seated on the bleachers under the pavilion roof sheltering the stage and shading the dance floor. The Cinco de Mayo souvenir tee-shirts are just $10. See more pictures on Flickr. And go dance, for happy feet and happy spirits.

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