The Republic of Guatemala is a Central American country which historically formed the core of the Maya civilization, one of the most sophisticated and highly developed societies in the history of the Americas and the entire world. After being subjugated to Spanish rule, Guatemala gained independence in 1821 and became an independent republic in 1821. A decade-long civil war that began in the 1950s provided the impetus for generations of Guatemalans to seek a better life abroad, often in Florida, Texas, and California.

Metro Los Angeles is home to one of the largest Guatemalan populations outside of Guatemala. Communities with substantial numbers of Guatemalans include the cities of Los Angeles, Long Beach, Hawthorne, Palmdale, Inglewood, Paramount and the unincorporated communities of Lennox and Val Verde. Metro Los Angeles is also home to several notable Guatemalans, including the prominent street artist Mauricio “Cache” Reyes, and a plethora of Guatemalan restaurants serving up delicious traditional dishes.

Chapín is a word that many Guatemalans use to describe their ethnicity with pride, and the history of the word chapín dates back to the 15th century. Chapines were a platform that was popular in Spain. The footwear for which the Guatemalan nickname gained its name eventually disappeared and at present the name is very popular and is used as an adjective for a person who comes from Guatemala.

Festival Chapín Los Ángeles is a non-profit organization based in California that is committed to promoting the art and culture of Guatemala abroad. Its mission is to offer resources to educational institutions in Guatemala that help to promote the education, health and well-being for children from less-advantaged homes in the country.

The festival is free and was created to annually attracts a multi-cultural audience to the middle of Los Angeles. The 2019 Festival Chapín Los Ángeles will take place in Los Angeles’ Lafayette Park on August 24 & 25 from 10:00 am to 10:00 pm. The free and third annual event, whose theme this year is "Recordando mis Raíces" (remembering my roots), celebrates Guatemalan culture via the country’s historic folklore, music, and "Chapín" gastronomy.

All members of the SoCal community are invited to enjoy live traditional marimba music, food vendors, as well as exhibitors with traditional clothing and artisanal goods from Guatemala. The festival opening will have a performance by Ajpop - a Tecum dance group that will conduct a Mayan ceremony.

On Saturday, August 24 at 10:00 am, a forty foot long ‘barrilete’ (decorated kite) will be elevated at the festival. A tradition during ‘Día de Muertos’ (Day of the Dead) in Guatemala is the flying of these gigantic and beautifully decorated kites, created by the people of Sumpango and Santiago Sacatepéquez, Guatemala.