Bay Area/ San Francisco/ Arts & Culture
Published on May 28, 2019
Scenes from 2019's San Francisco Carnaval Festival & Grand ParadeMembers of Nicaragua Danza, Hijos del Maíz make their way down Mission Street as part of the Grand Parade. | Photos: Cheryl Guerrero/Hoodline 

Culture, color, music and fun took over the Mission District this past weekend as San Francisco celebrated its 41st annual Carnaval.

Created by a group of local musicians and artists in 1979, the free, two-day festival is a celebration of Latin American and Caribbean culture. It's held every Memorial Day weekend, kicking the city’s street fair and festival season into high gear.

Esforço takes part in the Grand Parade.

This year’s theme was “La Cultura Cura – Culture Heals," which aims to “bring awareness to the fact that the creation of art, music, dance and dialogue helps communities build support systems."

“We believe that culture has the power to affirm one’s value, build a diverse community, and politically mobilize people of color, leading to positive outcomes and collective healing," the festival's co-founder and artistic director Roberto Hernandez said in a statement.

Members of the Instituto de Cultura Raíces del Perú contingent pose for a portrait before the parade.

Close to 70 comparsas, or contingents, came together for this year’s Carnaval celebration. Hundreds of participants represented countries throughout Latin America, including Brazil, Mexico, Cuba, Guatemala, Haiti and Peru.

On Sunday, the rain stopped and the sun arrived just in time for the start of the Grand Parade. Here are more scenes from the day’s events:

Members of  the June Jordan High School comparsa dance on Bryant Street before the parade.
Comunidad Yucateca
Danza de los Diablos de Juxtlahuaca.
Jane Galerkina from the Muito Quente comparsa.
Fogo Na Roupa Grupo Carnavalesco Cultural drummers.
La Cumbiamba Colombiana dances in the parade.
Dancers from the Aquarela Brazilian Dance Ensemble arrive before the parade.
A participant with The Church of 8 Wheels skates down Mission Street with his pink-haired companion.
The Royal Court of  Maracatu Pacífico