Friday, July 21, 2017 This Week's Paper

Cultura infuses art, culture into community

Only a few days after celebrating its grand opening, Cultura Event Center has already booked internationally known performers for a number of events. The event space and reception hall is already booked for much of the summer, when it will hold weddings, receptions, corporate functions and more.

Although the facility is geared toward serving the local Hispanic community, Executive Director Marvin Gaviria hopes the event center becomes a place where anyone can infuse their own culture in the community however they see fit.

“I wanted to create a facility that encompasses everything – culture, live music, community,” Gaviria said. “I hope this space becomes a canvas to express your culture, whether that is through a corporate event or a private event.”

He and business partner Globo Azul Events hope the new addition to the neighborhood enhances Tacoma’s beauty while infusing art and culture into the community.

The 11,000-square-foot facility offers full state-of-the-art audio and lighting systems, beautiful exposed brick walls, a long bar on the main floor and a smaller, private bar upstairs. The two areas can be rented separately, and private changing rooms are available for bridal parties, as well.

“People can use this facility for whatever type of event they want,” Gaviria said. “Our rates vary quite a bit depending on what they need.”

Cultura also offers a shared commercial kitchen available for use by farmers market vendors, caterers, food truck operators and more. Multiple walk-in freezers and refrigerators allow for ample food storage, as well. “I want people to know that we’re a part of the community, and want to hold this place to a higher standard to have a positive impact on the community,” Gaviria said.

During a ribbon cutting celebration March 1, Tacoma City Councilmember Marty Campbell praised Cultura for offering a shared commercial kitchen to potentially open doors for food truck operators and other small business people. “We need more community kitchens open to the public in Tacoma,” he said. “As we work to become a true international city, it is places like this that put us on the map.”

Campbell also believes the cultural performances and events will only help build up the local business community and neighborhood itself. “You can tell that the South Tacoma Business District embraces art, but Cultura’s performance art and other activities will be huge for the area,” he added.

Coming up on March 22, Cultura is holding a night of live music by salsa superstar Luisito Carrion – one of the originators of salsa. For more information about Cultura Event Center, e-mail

Cultura Event Center is located at 5602 S. Washington St.