The high number of Cuban refugees in this
area felt that they needed to remember their
heritage and the struggle that their fellow
went through to gain their freedom.
This small part of Southern Florida is famous
for its once a year festival that brings in
visitors from all over the world.
is listed as one of the largest in world with
over 1 million people showing up every year to
celebrate with the Cuban community.
The festival is not so much a time to celebrate;
it is more like a time to share immigrant pride.
Ethnic groups from all different countries dance
throughout the streets of Calle Ocho wearing the
flags of their home countries.
Most people are
from Latin American descent, but you can even
see German and Irish parading their colors as
Foods from all of the different ethnic
groups normally go on sale first thing in the
morning and all you can see for blocks is one
huge group of
mixed heritage enjoying each
The music kicks off in the early afternoon
spreading out onto 30 or more stages around the
area. Salsa, reggae, and meringue music normally
drown out any other sounds. This festival has
been going strong for 30 years and it just keeps
getting better.The 1988 festival was a landmark
celebration for all because it marked the entry
into the Guinness Book of World Records for the
world’s largest conga line!