“I’m here to see Latin Fuze and Safety Orange,” said Garcia. “I love their (Safety Orange) Sublime music, their 311 and all their feel good music.”
Besides the music, she was also looking forward to seeing friends, “have a couple of drinks and enjoy the fireworks.”
It was 6:30 p.m., and as the desert sun refused to retreat most attendees stayed near to the vendors that lined Stark Field.
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But not El Centro resident Kym Scarpitti; she was in the middle of the field dancing.
“I think this is great. Music makes people come together and I love it,” she said.
“But now I’m feeling like a weirdo,” Scarpitti said with a smile as she realized that she was the only one dancing. She kept dancing nonetheless. She was barefoot. “It’s a good day,” she said.
Moments later, the Central Union High School Dance Club gathered feet away from Scarpitti.
Its members were getting ready to make the only dance presentation of the night. Some 15 dancers performed Latin tunes in front of the growing crowd.
El Centro resident Maria Casta was in that crowd. Her daughter, Michelle Casta, 16, is the founder and president of the dance club.
“I feel very proud of her,” said Maria Casta. “She struggled a lot for this, but she did it, she made the club.”
The club performed flawlessly. This comes as no surprise given they practiced for two months, said Michelle Casta. “I feel very proud and happy that my dream came through.”
Meanwhile, the sun started to retreat and the stream of people coming into Stark Field became more abundant.
Latin Fuze got on stage about that time and Brawley resident Yolanda Garcia was already in front of the stage.
Her son, Gerardo Garcia, is the lead guitarist of the band.
“I like all their songs alike,” she said in Spanish.
The band started playing soon after.
“It’s good,” said Juan Sanchez from Calexico, referring to the music. His friend Yissel Mondragon agreed with a shy smile. Mondragon and Sanchez started dancing moments later.
This is the fifth year the city’s had this event, said staff assistant Susana Perkins.
About 3,000 people were expected to come out and enjoy the music and in particular the fireworks.
“That’s what people really like,” Perkins said.
And Mitzi Garcia was doing exactly that.
“I love it. It’s everything I expected,” she said and added “The music … I feel it in my bones.”
Staff Writer Alejandro Davila can be reached at 760-337-3445 or firstname.lastname@example.org