On Wednesday, October 13, our annual Fiesta de Flores event—presented in collaboration with New York City Councilmember Vanessa Gibson in celebration of Hispanic/Latinx Heritage Month—honored the cultural traditions and botanical heritage of the people of Latin America and the Caribbean here at NYBG through music, crafts, and more.
The Garden presented the Hispanic Heritage Month Distinguished Leadership Award to Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. during the festivities. The award took the form of an original modillion (an ornate architectural bracket) from the 1937 restoration of the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, designed by Lord & Burnham ca. 1899 and first opened in 1902. It was presented to the Borough President in recognition of his outstanding leadership, commitment, and contributions to the people and the Borough of the Bronx by NYBG CEO & The William C. Steere Sr. President Jennifer Bernstein, as well as Trustees Joseph A. Thompson and Anthony Perez, on behalf of NYBG’s staff and Board of Trustees.
Hispanic Heritage Month awards were also presented by New York City Councilmember Vanessa Gibson; to Freddy Fortoso, AVP of Community Outreach & Growth, Essen Healthcare; Ramona Garcia, Supportive Services Manager, Highbridge Community Development Corporation; and Janet Peguero, Bronx Borough Director, Amplify Her.
Guests enjoyed guided tours of Caribbean plants in the Haupt Conservatory, while music and live entertainment were provided by Carlos Jimenez Mambo Quintet and Bombazo Dance Co. NYBG graduate Nsombi Woodson provided a floral arranging demonstration as well. Artisans and vendors at the event included Bronx Native, Designs by Sol, Juan Carlos Suazo, Gladys Rosas-LaFrossia, Milteri Tucker-Concepcion, and Terramax Entertainment.
Dr. Ina Vandebroek, Matthew Calbraith Perry Associate Curator of Economic Botany and Caribbean Program Director at NYBG, provided information about the Garden’s collaboration with the people from the Caribbean and Mexico living in New York City to help document and preserve their rich biocultural traditions of using plants as medicines and for general well-being.
This community program is supported by the NYC Council’s A Greener NYC Initiative.
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