By Angela Barbosa
A perfect blue sky was the backdrop for the 16th annual flag-raising ceremony in celebration of Brazilian Independence Day in Danbury.
Members of the Brazilian community gathered at the Danbury City Hall, joined by Mayor Mark Boughton, Minister Paulo Roberto de Almeida and spouse, representing the Consulate General of Brazil in Hartford and state and local dignitaries to celebrate Brazil’s 193rd anniversary of the Proclamation of Independence.
Emanuela Palmares, Tribuna’s editor and the event’s MC, joined Mayor Boughton in recognizing Genilson Palmares of Amazon Concrete, Inc., Tom Devine of Two Steps Downtown Grille and Dr. Melissa Saad, emergency room doctor at Danbury Hospital, for their community support and contributions.
Both national flags where raised by the El Elyon members of the Pathfinders Club, a worldwide program organized and directed by the Youth Department of the General Conference of the Seventh-Day Adventists.
The U.S. national anthem was interpreted by Maria Lostocco, a student of business administration at Western Connecticut State University. The Brazilian national anthem was interpreted by the young members of the Clube Universo of Bethel, with Edwin Rojas playing violin, Richard Paredes on the drum and Bryan Costa on the keyboard.
The ceremony ended with Mayor Boughton presenting a plaque affixed at the City Hall atrium with the names of the recipients of the American Dream Awards, a scholarship and fundraising gala organized by the Tribuna Newspaper’s Publisher, Celia Bacelar, to recognize members of the immigrant community for their stories of overcoming struggles to reach their American Dream.