Local Parishes

Drive-by event offers the opportunity to show support for Topeka parish and school

Armando Chavez and Adalina Cooper  pass their donation to Felipe and Jackie Rangel through the sunroof of the car of Adalina’s parents — Adam and Angelina Cooper. LEAVEN PHOTO BY MARC ANDERSON

TOPEKA — The COVID-19 pandemic may have canceled numerous events, but a Topeka parish found a way to keep the spirit of its main fundraiser alive.

A two-hour, drive-by fiesta held July 18 in lieu of Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish’s annual Fiesta Mexicana offered attendees an opportunity to enjoy some music while offering their support to a great cause.

Sister Juanita Banuelos, left, and Sister Rebecca Granado, members of the Augustinian Recollect Missionary Sisters, enjoy the music from their convent, located just a block from the church. The nuns teach at Holy Family School. LEAVEN PHOTO BY MARC ANDERSON

A summer tradition for more than 80 years, Fiesta Mexicana usually includes food sales, a royalty contest, a parade, a golf tournament, a weeklong street festival and carnival, dance exhibitions, mariachi bands and an art show — all of which highlight Mexican culture.

The annual fundraiser benefits both the parish and Holy Family School, the grade school shared with Sacred Heart-St. Joseph Parish.

While waiting to collect donations from passersby, Roxie and Danny Ortiz dance to the music emanating from a nearby boombox. LEAVEN PHOTO BY MARC ANDERSON

Due to the pandemic, Alicia Guerrero-Chavez, chair of the event, along with a team of volunteers, decided to offer the drive-by event in an effort to raise money and generate enthusiasm for next year.

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The Leaven

The Leaven is the official newspaper for the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas.

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