Welcome to Cafe Cultura's June 2017 newsletter! 

We are excited to update you as we work to fulfill our mission.


#CafeCultura #XpressYourself #TellingOurStories #ArtInThePark #WordsToActions #RiseUp

CafĂ© Cultura is an award-winning arts, culture, and youth development organization that promotes unity and healing among Indigenous peoples through creative expression while empowering youth to find their voice, reclaim oral and written traditions, and become leaders in their communities. 

We hope this message finds you and your family in good health and spirits.  This newsletter helps us keep you informed of our growth as an organization. You can find more updates on our Facebook (facebook.com/cafecultura), Issuu (issuu.com/cafecultura/docs), Instagram (instagram.com/cafeculturadenver), Flickr (flickr.com/photos/cafecultura/sets), and Youtube (youtube.com/user/cafeculturavideos) accounts.

Cafe Cultura presents
7th Annual Art in the Park
an open mic w/ spoken word, live art, vendors, food for sale, & community!

Spread the word...Bring your family & friends!!!!!   

Note: Make sure to come early to sign up and get a good seat.

WHAT: All ages showcase (alcohol/drug free event)

WHEN: June 9th....2nd Fri. of every month...Summer 2017 (July 14th, August 11th)

--->Marketplace w/ Vendors, Live Art, & Food for Sale @ 6:30pm
--->Show starts @ 7pm

WHERE: La Alma/Lincoln Park Amphitheater (12th Ave & Osage St...next to the swimming pool)  

$3-$5 donation (nobody turned away)

Everyone is welcome!

June Features:
----> Participants from Cafe Cultura's classes  at La Academia @ Denver Inner City Parish, Grant Beacon Middle School, Denver School for Science and Technology at College View HS, Kepner Beacon Middle School, New America School (Lowry), Alameda HS, Jeffco Indian Education, and College Track. Youth from these sites have done an amazing job with Cafe Cultura's Telling Our Stories spoken word class. In addition to publishing books of poetry, they performed for their communities. They will come together to share their words and insights with our regular audience.
Online books:

----> Wheelchair Sports Camp (Denver's biggest smallest band):  Combining humor, playfulness, radical political perspectives, compassion and undeniable musical chops, Wheelchair Sports Camp is unlike any other hip-hop act around. Fronted by the wheelchair bound MC/beat-maker/activist/educator/shit-talker Kalyn, the band is a combination of live and electronic instruments with a more noisey, jazzy, experimental, combination to the traditional hip-hop group. The band has been featured on the cover of the Village Voice as well as in SPIN Magazine, Huffington Post, High Times Magazine and more. The band unknowingly started in the summer of 1997 when Kalyn moved back from Burbank, CA to her Denver hometown and was invited to attend and corrupt the 14th annual week-long Wheelchair Sports Camp. The band tours the states and beyond from their home in Denver, Colorado.
"HARD OUT HERE FOR A GIMP" - Wheelchair Sports Camp [official video]

Live Graffiti Art led by:
----> Thien Tai: 

Community Feature:
----> Sisters of Color United for Education & HEAL:  SOCUE cultivates Promotoras to defend the wellness of the the community, mind, body and spirit. Our Promotora program employs a holistic prevention and intervention model, developed by and for members of disenfranchised communities with special consideration given to mitigating barriers related to race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, low socioeconomic status, language and culture, barriers often overlooked by mainstream organizations. We have two locations, and the newest, is in the Santa Fe Arts district in Denver, called HEAL. HEAL Denver Promotoras provide a strengths-based approach to reinforce protective factors for at-risk families and communities through a cooperative/collectivist approach. H.E.A.L. Health, Education, Art and Leadership is created in a safe space and encourages collective achievement goals, strong community networks, bilingualism, and multi-culturalism.

For more info: info@cafecultura.org; 720-460-9203

#CafeCultura #XpressYourself #TellingOurStories

Words to Actions Youth Leadership Program 




Xpress Yourself

Spoken Word/Poetry 

Workshops for Youth (#XpressYourself)

We have worked with schools and organizations throughout Colorado to give underserved youth an opportunity to express themselves .
If you are interested in Cafe Cultura presenting at your school or organization, feel free to contact us. We have used this  highly engaging and  culturally relevant  workshop structure for over a decade to encourage Chicana/o and Native youth to use spoken word to give voice to our stories of love, struggle, injustice, and celebration. They serve to  support Language Arts curriculum (4th through 12th grades) Workshop structure was designed by a spoken word artist with 4 years experience teaching at the middle and high school level with contributions from other poets and youth advocates. 

Cafe Cultura's Xpress Yourself: Hip Hop, Poetry, & Spoken Word workshops
Promo video for Cafe Cultura's Xpress Yourself: Hip Hop, Poetry, & Spoken Word workshops

We recently finished working with amazing youth @ Alameda International Jr/Sr High School, DSST College View HS,  New America School (Lowry),  and  College Track . Below is a glimpse. Look to next month's newsletter for more.

" I come from the precious hands
of the elotero
who finds a way to make un pedazo de elote
into an amazing wonder.
I will always remember
how each and every bite
comes from hard work of farming
and agriculture.
I will never forget
the Indigenous and Latino farmers
who have been growing corn
for thousands of years,
and how the root of the corn
brings a plant,
and a person
who can bring good things
to the world.
I am topped with chile,
y queso,
adding meaning to my life."

"So I let the waves carry me,
and closer
to tranquility.
I still must fight,
not the waves.
The undertow
sneaks up
as I almost reach the island.
I still fight.
One day,
I will reach the white sand.
I still have mountains to climb
but I will reach the peak.
At least now,
I know
'Na nalueepanu aku aiia oukou,
lakou i palapalai kounele ana.'
'The waves do not push you,
they map your journey.'"
Click here to read
Performance for their peers 

Click here to read

Performance @ Book Release

"I find myself shackled
with these chains of corrupted steel,
all alone in an empty cage
full of broken promises and lies.
They have been fed to my people
through history
and media,
expecting us to be brainwashed.
They want me to trade my humanity
for patriotism.
As I have no choice,
I clench my fist
and throw it high into the sky
of blues
as I cut the strings of authority.
I am a Chicano
escaping the USA penitentiary
with power of my knowledge.
I seek to change the world."

"Let whatever you feel
out onto the paper,
not your wrist.
Your body is beautiful,
so do not try to modify it.
People will love you for you,
so there is no need to change.
Life is pretty confusing.
People will leave,
so do not expect them to stay.
Grandpa and Uncle loved you,
so do not blame yourself.
Everyone has an opinion,
do not misinterpret it.
You are worth it!
You are valuable!
You are strong!
You are not too much!
It is not your fault!
You are beautiful!
So close your eyes,
take a deep breath,
and smile.
because everything will get better."

If you are interest ed in having Cafe Cultura bring our "Telling Our Stories" workshop series to your school as an electi ve, after-school enrichment, or a part of an existing class , contact us.  

Our youth-written books are available online . To access each collection of powerful spoken word poetry from participants in our workshop series,  simply click on the book cover .
Make sure to read future newsletters for more updates.
In this newsletter....
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Contact Information
Cafe Cultura
910 Galapago St
Denver, CO 80204

Hours: Mon-Fri from 8am to 6pm

Make a one-time or monthly donation to Cafe Cultura!

You have the opportunity to invest in Cafe Cultura's work in the community. Click on the following image to make a tax-deductible donation.

Whether you are a beginner or an experienced poet, join us as we workshop poems you are currently drafting or will write during our time together.

WHEN:  3rd Friday of the month (June 16th, July 21st, August 18th)
TIME: 6 to 7:30pm

WHERE:  910 Galapago St

Questions: 720-460-9203; info@cafecultura.org
Join Our Movement!

Exciting Updates
-Thank you to everyone who joined us at our last open mic. It was an amazing night! We appreciate everyone who made it possible: volunteers, open mic participants, and attendees. Special thank you to 1) Assetou Xango for blessing us with powerful poetry 2) Los Mocochetes for sharing music that made us groove and think 3) Desiree Lawrence for showing us insightful and moving art 4) Jackie Fawn for gifting us a piece of your creativity 5) Colorado People's Alliance explaining how we can improve our communities through organizing. Thank you!

Videos at our 5/12/17 Open Mic

- Cafe Cultura  was honored to receive a Civil Rights Award from NEWSED.
- Thank you to the  Denver American Indian Commission   for nominating our  Executive Director Ara Cruz for a 2016 Mayor's Diversity & Inclusion Award ...he accepted it on behalf of Cafe Cultura and everyone who makes what we do possible. Below is both a group picture and his acceptance video produced as part of the ceremony.
2016 Mayor's Diversity Award - Ara Cruz/Cafe Cultura
2016 Mayor's Diversity Award

Performances/shows from Cafe Cultura poets:  
If you want us to perform at an assembly or host an open mic featuring our spoken word artists, contact us. Funds will go to sustaining our organization and the work we do in the community (especially our workshops for youth). 

-We continue to receive support from important members of the foundation community. Thank you to our past and current funders: Arts In Society, Imagine 2020 Fund, Hispanics In Philanthropy, Latino Community Foundation Colorado, Young Latino Philanthropists, Bowen Family Performing Arts Fund (The Denver Foundation), Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD), National Association for Latino Arts and Culture Fund for the Arts, Seventh Generation Fund for Indigenous Peoples , WESTAF , and The Chinook Fund .