Saturday will be damp and bleak outside, but the sunny warmth of Latin America will spread throughout Lakeview Terrace in Lakewood, during the third annual Garden State Latino Cultural Festival.

Costa Rica Music Group, Photo credit to NAALP

The National Association for the Advancement of Latino People (NAALP) New Jersey chapter, based in Lakewood, sponsors and organizes the buoyant day of folkloric entertainment, music, dancing, children's games, prizes - and, of course, a plentiful layout of delectable dishes.

Additionally, visitors can take home mementos of the day of fun, with artistic works and crafts on display, for viewing and for sale.

The bilingual nature of the activities and entertainment reflects the NAALP's outreach across ethnic and cultural borders. It's more than a party - it's an opportunity for international understanding.

Powerhouse publisher Jorge Rod (Latinos Unidos de NJ, The Jewish Journal), an Ocean County resident for 45 years, spearheads the NAALP's mission in the Garden State. Among its goals,according to the group's website, is "to promote education, language skills, and job skills to broaden the com­munity’s awareness of local, state and national opportunities."

Admission is free for the festival, which runs from 11 AM until 5 PM inside the venue on Oak Street. Learn more by e-mailing NAALP, or calling the group's offices,1-855-465-2763.

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