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Saturday, January 7: Three Kings event celebrates Latino heritage

Roxbury, Mass. Â- With food, live music, and toy donations for hundreds of children, youth development organization Sociedad Latina will once again observe the rich Latin American and Caribbean holiday tradition of Three Kings Day with its 21st annual celebration on Saturday, Jan. 7. The festive custom has become a seasonal centerpiece of the Roxbury neighborhood and Boston Latino community, and is an important opportunity to connect Latino youth with their culture and build positive cultural identities.

"Celebrating our Latino cultural heritage is a vital part of Sociedad LatinaÂ's mission," says Executive Director Alexandra Oliver-Dávila. "Three Kings Day is a unique occasion to preserve tradition and bring the cityÂ's Latino community together, and weÂ're thrilled to once again host our event."

WHAT: Sociedad LatinaÂ's 21st Annual Three Kings Day Celebration
WHEN: Saturday, Jan. 7 / 10 a.m.-noon
WHERE: Mission Church Parish Center / 1545 Tremont St., Roxbury

During the celebration, Sociedad Latina will present its annual Nuestra Voz Awards to honor achievements in BostonÂ's Latino community. This year the awards will be presented to the Student Immigrant Movement for its tireless immigrant student advocacy, and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center for its leadership in the movement against sugar-sweetened beverages. Local leaders, including City Councilors John Connolly, Mike Ross, and State Rep. Jeffrey Sánchez will join us in recognition of this special day. Continuing Sociedad LatinaÂ's dedication to building a healthier Latino community, the event will feature a healthy breakfast menu.

Chris Buchanan, Director of Public Affairs and Government Relations for Walmart in Greater Boston, will present Sociedad Latina a $25,000 grant for its Mission Possible! College and Career Pathways program.

The Three Kings Day Celebration also serves as Sociedad LatinaÂ's annual meeting, includes its Board of Directors election, and is an opportunity to reflect on the past yearÂ's success. In 2011, among numerous other accomplishments, the organization was honored with ChildrenÂ's Hospital BostonÂ's first-ever William L. Boyan Award for Excellence in Community Health, hosted a Latino Heritage Month concert series with support from the National Endowment for the Arts, ran a citywide-recognized, middle school summer learning project on the Simmons College Campus, and launched a new, youth-led community organizing campaign to reform the Boston Public Schools lunch program.