PODER Spotlighted Community Partner of the Night

PORTLAND, Ore. (November 1, 2023) – The Portland Trail Blazers invite all of Rip City to celebrate Latinx and Hispanic Heritage Night as they take on the Memphis Grizzlies on November 5 at Moda Center. The night will engage fans in cultural celebratory activations from Brazilian Samba dancing to traditional Mexican horse riding known as Escaramuza Charra.

Nonprofit PODER has been named both the Community Partner and 50/50 Raffle Partner of the night. PODER is Oregon’s Latino Leadership Network, seeking to build collective power and capacity to facilitate people-driven solutions that promote social, economic, and civic prosperity for all. PODER Oregon will receive proceeds from the 50/50 raffle and a donation to help amplify their work.  

“Sports provide an authentic way of connection to inclusively engage underrepresented communities in our Portland Metro area,” said Michelle Jalali, Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. “As we tip off the season with our very first heritage night celebrating our LatinX and Hispanic community, we want to ensure every member of Rip City has a great experience from the moment they walk into Moda Center.”

As fans arrive at Moda Center, they will have the opportunity to meet special guests outside; the Coronelas De Oregon, a female Mexican equestrian side saddle team and their horses. Coronelas De Oregon competes in Escaramuza Charra, a traditional event of women riding horses side saddle in choreographed maneuvers to music.

After being greeted by Coronelas De Oregon, fans can visit Dr. Jacks for a pre-game celebration with Corona and enjoy the music of mariachi throughout Dr. Jacks. Fans 21+ can enjoy the signature cocktail of the night, “El Sol” a refreshing margarita presented by Milagro Tequila at both Dr. Jacks and inside Moda Center.

The concourse will be buzzing with music from DJ Zinker, mixing to the beats of reggaeton, salsa and Latino beats. As fans explore the concourse, they’ll find posters of legendary Hispanic & LatinX icons hand-selected by our staff from Mi Gente, our Trail Blazers Hispanic & Latinx Business Resource Group. Before heading to the themed 360-Photo Booth for memorable photos, fans can pick up exclusive LatinX and Hispanic Heritage retail items from the Rip City Made collection at Rip City Clothing locations throughout the arena.

As game time draws near, Blaze’s Pre-Game Parade will start making its rounds with special guests, Ballet Folklorico Corazones Alegres, dancing with their colorful skirts. On the court, local singer Julana Torres and her brother perform the national anthem and showcase their Puerto Rican roots accompanied by the conga. After showcasing their talent, Ivan Hernandez, Director of Community Development at the Hillsboro Hops and Founder of Radio Bombero, introduces the players of the night in Spanish.

At half-time, fans will see an exhilarating performance from Rio Samba Brazil flying in all the way from Los Angeles, California to showcase their vibrant and energetic samba. In between quarters, Rip City can put their soccer skills to the test with a Fútbol activation at C24 on the 300-level. 

The Portland Trail Blazers want to acknowledge their business resource group, Mi Gente, for their support and creative vision in planning the Hispanic & Latinx Celebration.