Few people in the Rio Grande Valley have the ability to organize and hold successful events. What is a successful event? When the crowd outnumbers the invited guests. Many times an event takes weeks in planning and coordination. I guess that's true for most of us. But there are those few, rare ones that possess a special charm, a can-do attitude, a positive outlook, and an enthusiasm that is contagious. These people can throw a party or organize an event at the last minute and people will come. Such a person is Raquel Lopez.
The latest installment of her literary and arts presentation known as Enero Rojo Lunar (subtitled Letras en Español for this occasion) took place on the 29th of June only two days after having put the word out for the event. Raquel said she literally did not sleep one night putting it together. Those hours of lost sleep were not lost in vain, though because not only did the event take place at a totally new venue, but the guests came through by attending and the crowd swelled with fresh faces.
In the poetry scene you start to notice after a while that the crowd is the same for every event held. But perhaps what has helped Raquel's Enero Rojo Lunar's events attract new blood is the fact that every time the program involves something totally new and also variety...plenty of it. This time around there were poets, story tellers, painters, and perhaps the one participant that stole the show, the singer Ana Lisa Salazar singing acapella. She had the crowd singing along and asking--demanding an encore. Truly a thing to see. Haven't been to one of these gigs yet? You're losing out-big time.
Gabriel H. Sanchez is an author, poet, actor, editor, and publisher from the Rio Grande Valley in south Texas, on the border with Mexico. Gabriel is the author of "Once Upon a Bad Hombre," "The X Series," "The Martian Ones: Tales of Human Folly," and "The Fluid Chicano." You can read more about him and his other projects at gabrielhugo.com or on his Facebook page: @gabrielhugoauthor.
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