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Museum of Boulder launches 'Voces Vivas'

The exhibit celebrates the history of Latino families in Boulder County.

BOULDER, Colo. — While many people across Colorado may not associate Boulder County with having a large presence of Latino families, the Museum of Boulder will open an exhibit to show the impact Latinos have had in the community over time.

"I have to show you this picture. That's my father with Cesar Chavez," Phil Hernandez said.

Hernandez contributed to the exhibit known as "Voces Vivas" at the Museum of Boulder. He's lending a photo of his father and Chavez, the labor and civil rights leader. Normally, that photo is just kept at home, but Hernandez said it is something that should be shared.

"My grandson came up to see, and my son was explaining who Cesar Chavez was. And you could just see him smiling, like wow, we’re famous," Hernandez said.

He said the picture represents what his family has fought for as immigrants.

"I am so proud of the contributions that el Chicanos have made to this country," Hernandez said. "We have never taken. We have always given and given back many folds to what this country has provided for us."

The Latino families who inspired the exhibit at the Museum of Boulder were able to see it before it opens and add some final touches to the exhibit curated by the community.

"For me, to have my family here and in different areas of the museum, it’s an honor and I really do hope that my family feels happy and prideful that we are here and that we share our piece of the story," Jacqueline Manzo said.

Manzo, a student at the University of Colorado Boulder, and her family has lived in Boulder County for decades.

"This was my uncle, my Tio Salvador Manzo’s Boycott Flag during the huelgas for farm workers, Bracero, in Hollister California," Manzo said. "I brought this here today to showcase that history."

Each family has left their mark in some way on the community, according to Linda Arroyo-Holstrom. She is the lead community curator of the exhibit. Arroyo-Holstrom said the impact of Latino families is often overlooked in a predominantly white county.

"This is a chance for them to see a segment of the population that is from this area and has labored and worked so hard to have a better future for their children," Arroyo-Holstrom said.

She said this type of exhibit is a first for the local Latino community.

"I always ask myself, am I making my family proud of what I am doing?" Arroyo-Holstrom said. "Look around, I mean, when has our story been told like this. It’s a nice moment."

The exhibit opens Saturday and will run for a full year. If you want to find out more, click here.

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