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'Small businesses are the heartbeat of our communities': 9 Hispanic entrepreneurs debut businesses at Columbus ¡Festival Latino!

The festival, a two-day event held at Genoa Park, is a free, family-friendly event with activities, music, food, fashion, art, and dance.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Nine aspiring Hispanic entrepreneurs officially launched their businesses at this weekend's ¡Festival Latino! near downtown Columbus.

The festival, a two-day event held at Genoa Park, is a free, family-friendly event celebrating family and community with activities, music, food, fashion, art and dance from the heart of Latin America.

Following an official ribbon cutting on Friday, the nine new Latino entrepreneurs were officially cleared to begin business at the festival. But this wouldn't have been made possible without the Mercadito Raices program.

The program was developed with the Ohio Small Business Development Center to assist Latino businesses through all the steps needed to prepare and have successful sales in community events and open the doors to a wider market.

The curriculum consists of 12 workshops and 60 hours of one-on-one coaching that helps participants secure a business license, branding, marketing, packaging, presentation, food delivery, menu development, pricing and on-site support on the day of the event to ensure success.

“Small businesses are the heartbeat of our communities investing in their potential is an economic development strategy that ensures viability and growth. Festival Latino is an ideal venue to showcase our local businesses and invest in our local economy," said Columbus City Councilwoman Lourdes Barroso de Padilla.

The nine entrepreneurs that debuted at this years ¡Festival Latino! all met the requirements necessary to complete the program. 

Below is a complete list of the featured businesses:

  • Boutique Orquidea
  • Monarcas Sweets & More  
  • Loayza Gifts and Publications
  • Encanto Mexicano
  • Libélulas Sugar’s Cake
  • Sarah Blaze 
  • Taquizas “El Cobijas”
  • YM Hair Studio

¡Festival Latino! runs until 8 p.m. Sunday and admission is free. You can also visit their website for more information.

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