Christ Church host Cinco de Mayo event
Updated: April 20, 2012 2:50PM
Christ Church Winnetka will host its seventh annual Cinco de Mayo FiestaFest on Sunday, May 6. The benefit dinner at 470 Maple Street, Winnetka, typically attracts 75-100 people, and raises funds for maintenance projects at its partner church, Jesus de Nazaret, located in the small village of La Esperanza, in the state of Oaxaca, Mexico.
Church volunteers again this year will serve up traditional Mexican fare donated by local grocer The Grand Food Center.
“Christ Church is a mainstay in our community, and we’re pleased to continue to assist the church with wonderful benefit,” says Winnetka store manager Rick Pasquini.
The dinner cost is $15 (age 13 and older) and $5 for kids. The event will be held from 5:30-8 p.m. in the church’s Great Hall. Then evening includes dinner, piñatas for the kids, entertainment and prizes.
Combining the FiestaFest proceeds with funds raised from its annual Easter Lily sale, the church generates about $2,500 each year for improvements to the Mexican church. Christ Church parishioner Gary Martin, who helps to organize the annual dinner, says that the money helps offset maintenance projects like painting and caulking. The Winnetka parish is working with their partners in La Esperanza to install a water filtration system in the near future.
Martin and about 10 other Christ Church parishioners fly to Mexico at their own expense. From Mexico City, they head to Veracruz, where they travel about four hours south to La Esperanza.
The relationship, Martin explains, is the result of a decade-long partnership between the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago and the Diocese of Southeast Mexico.
“Our goal isn’t just to travel and help with a service project like Habitat for Humanity,” says Martin. “Instead,” he relates, “we hope to develop and pursue true, life-long relationships with this church and its parishioners.”
While the heat and humidity in this region makes the work grueling, he says, it’s also quite remarkable to see what the group can accomplish in its five-day stay. “We’ve been doing this for about 7 years now, and many of us return to this village year after year.”
For information about the FiestaFest, visit www.christchurch.org, or call the church office at 847-446-2850.