Sunday, April 12, 2015

La Montañita Cooperative to Observe Silver Anniversary of Earth Day in Nob Hill

Ecuadoran visitors celebrate Inti Raymi at UNM
As Earth Day 2015 approaches, I reflect on one of the songs I heard last night  in the repertoire of the Albuquerque-based Baracutanga band. The piece, entitled Sangra Pachamama, urged us to protect Mother Earth (Pachamama) against the ongoing environmental violence that we have inflicted upon her.

Pachamama has been a central figure in the Aymara and Quechua cultures of the Andes, and her name is now invoked in efforts to protect the Amazon Forest.  In the winter (summer in the Northern Hemisphere), the peoples of the Andes hold the Inti Raymi celebration to honor Mother Earth and the Sun.

Baracutanga's  music of celebration  makes all listeners want to dance. That was the case in their appearance at The Outpost  Performance Space last night. And the good news is that this band is one of the featured performers in La Montañita Cooperative's annual Earth Day celebration in Nob Hill on Sunday, April 19. The group plays Brazilian sambas and batucada, Colombian cumbias, Afro-Peruvian festejos and landos,South American fusion music and much more. Check out this video of their performance of  "Rumba de Burque."

Along with Baracutanga, several other local musical and dance groups are performing at the Earth Day  event on Sunday. Here is the lineup:

10 am: Ehecatl Aztec Dancers
11 am: Adobe Brothers
12 pm: Alma Flamenca
1 pm: Jeeze Laweez
2 pm: Baile Baile Dance Company
2:30 pm: Adama African Dancers and Drummers
3 pm: Soul Kitchen
4 pm: Band Width No Name
5 pm: Baracutanga

Photo: La Montañita Cooperative
Nob Hill Event
This year represents a milestone for the Earth Day event, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary. As usual, a few blocks of Silver St. just behind the cooperative will be closed to traffic. Dozens of organizations that care about the environment and its inhabitants (people, flora and fauna) will set up displays. And of course, all sorts of delicious organic food will be available for sale. Read  more about the event in La Montañita Cooperative's website.

While the event is a festival and a celebration, it offers a sober reminder of how a steady warming of the global climate has put our global community at risk in a very significant manner. "Recent unusual weather patterns, not only here in New Mexico when we had three weeks of spring in February ending with the 9th biggest snow fall on record, are an undeniable reminder of the work we have do to restore and sustain our little planet," said Robyn Seydel, one of the organizers of the event.

Still, Sunday is also a day for commitments. "We firmly believe that with the same cooperative spirit that for 40 years enabled the Co-op to thrive and become the community hub for a sustainable future it has become, we can and will overcome the challenges we face," said Seydel.

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