Santa Monica celebrates culture, community, and business during Hispanic Heritage Month

The city of Santa Monica invites the public to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with several events and activities that will elevate, educate, and empower the themes between September 15 and October 15. A kick-off event, awards ceremony, drive-in films, and writer talks will shed light on Latinx identity and experience, as well as contributions from the Latinx community in Santa Monica. The empowering events are designed to provide economic mobility and networking opportunities as well as resources for economic recovery.

“During National Hispanic Heritage Month we honor Hispanic and Latin American cultures and contributions and celebrate the legacy that is rooted in all Latin American countries,” said the city’s Hispanic Heritage Month Steering Committee, made up of staff from across the organization. “Our goal for this first month-long event is to make a lasting impact on the well-being of the Latinx community. We hope this serves as a model for the programming, engagement, and resources that Latinx individuals are nurturing in the city. Together, we believe this month will reinvigorate, rethink, and redefine the city’s role in empowering the Latinx community. Celebrate the Latinx identity with us and promote racial justice. “

A list of the most important events can be found below. For the full list of events, visit All events are free for the public’s pleasure.

All in-person events will follow the LA County Department of Public Health’s COVID-19 protocols. Please do not participate if you have been or are exposed to COVID-19 symptoms. Unvaccinated individuals are strongly advised to wear a mask during the event. All persons must wear a mask indoors.

Kickoff event, Wednesday, September 15, 4 p.m.
Come to the 1300 block of Third Street Promenade (by the dinosaurs) to kick off Hispanic Heritage Month with music, dance, art, and mercadito. At 5 p.m. we hear from special keynote speakers.

Demonstration of “90404 Changing”, Sunday October 10th
Check for timely updates. Rooftop Cinema and the city’s Hispanic Heritage Month Committee present a special screening of “90404 Changing” at Santa Monica Airport, 3233 Donald Douglas Loop S. The film tells the story of a historic, culturally diverse area in Santa Monica through the experiences of two locals, one Mexican-American teacher (Paulina Sahagun) who decides to make a documentary about her neighborhood and a black poet (Barry Shabaka Henley) who knows about the hidden history of the area. We watch their paths cross and eventually join together to unearth the moving and often surprising stories of this neighborhood.

Closing Ceremony and Hispanic Heritage Awards, Friday, October 15, 3:30 p.m.

Join us in the town hall for a graduation party with music, dance, art and a lowrider car show that shouldn’t be missed. At this event, we will also honor local community members who have made a meaningful impact on the Santa Monica Hispanic and Latin American communities through outstanding dedication, recognizable action, excellent service, and tangible change, as shown in one or more of the following criteria. Community members are encouraged to submit nominations by Friday, September 24, 2021. Click here to view the nomination form in English. Click here to view the nomination form in Spanish.

Submitted by Constance Farrell, City of Santa Monica

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