For nearly 30 years, Chicago-area Puerto Ricans have gathered for the annual Fiestas Puertorriqueñas in June. Held in Humboldt Park, the festival, which Time Out Chicago has called the city’s largest festival after Taste of Chicago, provides Puerto Ricans and other Latinos an opportunity to celebrate their heritage with traditional food, carnival games and ethnic performances. Torrential rain on the festival’s first day and shootings just blocks from the festival’s parade route on Saturday, June 20, did not dampen spirits. Festival-goers still relished in the tradition of this six-day festival.

We have preserved these audio snapshots as a way to welcome immigrants and visitors to one of Chicago’s more unheralded treasures: A shared summer in the city.

Enjoy the slideshow that captures some of the sights and sounds of the festival and then click on the photos below to hear “snapshots” of festival-goers with rich stories about their immigrant backgrounds and experiences. We hope you enjoy exploring the Summer Snapshots as much as we did. Please share your stories with us as well.

Audio Snapshots