The Hola Festival is one of my favorite Knoxville events. I always see people I know; I try some authentic Latin American food and I hear some fun music. This year’s featured performers were a Puerto Rican band called Batukealo.
After looking at the food choices at all the booths, I decided to have an empanada at the Chile booth. The people working in the booth pointed out that their food was not fried. For dessert, I had an alfajore at the Argentina booth. I washed it down with an aguas frescas from one of the Mexico booths.
There are always interesting things to see in the display booths at the festival. A man selling shoes and sandals had an Aztec headdress in his booth. He told me that he would wear it in a performance later that day with the rest of his dance group who were en route from Nashville. A few booths away, a local artist from Clinton was selling sculptures made from wire, paper and clay as well as some beautifully painted spoons and some toys made from seed pods.
As in the past, a Dora the Explorer costumed character roamed the festival grounds. The FBI and the National Park Service and had booths next to each other. Pam Detko of the FBI handed out coloring books and child ID kits. The Park Service had a display of animal pelts among other items. When the park ranger saw my camera, she grabbed a pelt to pose for a picture.