The Fiesta Charra is coming to Lewisville and will feature activities of a traditional Charreada, as well as a costume contest and the event closing out with a five-time Grammy award winner Little Joe Y La Familia.
The event will mark the first of its kind in Lewisville and will feature two of the 10 traditional activities typically seen at the Charreada, which is an event similar to a rodeo and practiced in Mexico, according to the Director of Vita Vista Events Gabriel Duran.
The two events will be the Test of the Horse (Cala de Caballo), which involve putting a horse through a series of commands to test their training, and Skirmish (Escaramuza), which is a team of women riding side-saddled and executing equestrian exercises at full gallop.
In addition to the activities, the event will also feature Ballet Folklorico, a Frida Kahlo costume contest, food, games and will close out with five-time Grammy award winner Little Joe Y La Familia.
The event is being hosted by Vivid Vita Events. Duran said the organization’s goal is to host events that celebrate and promote Hispanic culture. Another event VVE hosted was the Noce De Cine Latino on May 19, which was a movie festival at University of North Texas.
Duran said since he has lived in Lewisville, he and his wife wanted to put on an event for the city’s Hispanic population. The city ended up approaching them about hosting an event at the local rodeo grounds.
Community Relations and Tourism Director James Kunke said the city wants to put on the event for several reasons, which includes celebrating the heritage of the Latino community in Lewisville
“We have 30 percent Latino community in Lewisville, so we think it’s important to recognize the richness of that culture,” Kunke said. “[To recognize] the value they bring to the table, to celebrate and a charreada does that.”
The city has previously done events based around Hispanic heritage, such as Cinco de Mayo, but Kunke said the event has since gone away due to the workload on volunteers.
Duran described the Charreada as a demonstration of beauty through the Charro’s (cowboy) attire and the handling of the horses. The event originates from traditions brought to Mexico from Spain in the 16th century. Charreadas have up to 10 different activities and are based on working traditions from the cowboys, or charros, of that time. The original charreadas were between haciendas, or family estates. Even today the teams featured in these competitions are typically extended families. Unlike most charreadas, the one in Lewisville will not be a competition.
The event is similar to the American rodeo, though different in a few ways. While a rodeo is typically timed, Duran said a charreada is scored and judged based on the finesse and grace of the rider and horse. The charros also compete in teams.
The Fiesta Charra will be held from noon to 7 p.m., May 26 at the Lewisville Rodeo Arena. The event is free to attend.