Anyone who follows my blog knows my love affair with the House of Pacific Relations (HPR) International Cottage’s Lawn Programs goes well beyond garden-variety puppy love. What’s not to love about a weekly mini-cultural festival that features paw-tapping music and dance performances, colorful costumes, traditional arts and crafts, and edible delicacies from many lands?
For those who have been hibernating too long, Lawn Program season generally runs from early March through October. During that time, nearly three dozen different member “Houses” each have a turn at highlighting their culture's unique offerings at a Sunday Lawn Program in the International Cottages’ courtyard.
While the Lawn Programs are known for being extremely pup friendly, many readers may not be aware there’s a pack of pups, aka the HPR Queens, that has a lot to do with that. In fact, the HPR Queens will once again kick off Lawn Program season with a diverse smorgasbord of food and entertainment from a variety of cultures this Sunday, March 6, from 12 noon to 4pm.
The HPR Queens is an organization of young ladies, aged 8 to 18, who represent each House of Pacific Relations. In addition to participating in the various activities of their respective House in Balboa Park, they also make their mark in the community through volunteer work for organizations like Mama’s Kitchen, MS Walk, and Father Joe’s Village. In the process, the HPR Queens (consisting of one queen and up to five princesses from each House) foster close relationships among the many packs represented in the House of Pacific Relations as well as a spirit of understanding, tolerance, and goodwill in their communities.
During Sunday’s Lawn Program, this year’s HPR Queens, Princesses, Junior Princesses, and Pee Wee Princesses will be introduced, and beginning at 2pm, they will perform in traditional costumes, promising many YouTube-worthy “aww” moments.