By Katie Wilmeth Posted July 15, 2008, 7:01 PM EDT
The League of Latin American Citizens capped off its 79th annual conference on Friday night with a 1,250-person banquet at the Washington Hilton’s enormous International Ballroom. After a week-long schedule of events, which included talks from both presumptive presidential candidates, the dinner drew a crowd with Senator Hillary Clinton as the featured speaker.
For the politically charged evening, at which Clinton spoke to an energized room about her continuing support for the Latino community, planner Jorge Fuentes Davila of the San Juan, Puerto Rico-based firm the Event Factory went for a decidedly American look. “We followed the red, white, and blue theme we’ve been doing the whole week,” he said.
To keep it simple, Fuentes Davila paired red linens and red rose centerpieces with the ballroom’s soft blue lighting and brought in a Mariachi band to set the tone. The evening’s big-name sponsors—including Wal-Mart, Sprint, Comcast, and American Airlines—also contributed to the setup. Miller provided buckets of bottled beers at each table, and Ford handed out model cars and flashlights as gifts to parting guests.