Group wins grant to produce short film about East Lawrence La Yarda neighborhood

Humanities Kansas has awarded a $3,500 grant to support a short documentary film project about La Yarda, a community of Mexican families who came to East Lawrence in the 1920s to work for the Santa Fe Railway. In 1951, a flood washed their homes away, but the community’s legacy lives on today.

The grant was awarded to the Lawrence Corporation for the Advancement of the Visual Arts and The Percolator Lawrence, which have teamed up to support the making of the documentary. Lourdes Kalusha-Aguirre, a recent University of Kansas film and media studies graduate, will serve as project director. Marlo Angell, the founding director of the Free State Festival and the new media director at the Lawrence Arts Center, will be the director.

Julie Mulvihill, executive director of Humanities Kansas, said in a news release that Humanities Kansas supports projects that look at Kansas’ history with fresh eyes and tell the stories of people and places that have shaped the state.

“This project will spark conversation about Mexican communities throughout Kansas and how their traditions continue to influence the culture of the state today,” she said.


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