DES MOINES, Iowa — Most Iowans are aware of Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, but this weekend marked a holiday to celebrate the children of the world.

Día del Niño, or “Day of the Child,” was observed in Mexico on Saturday and celebrated locally at Union Park in Des Moines. The Des Moines Public Library hosted the event for the second year in a row, but moved it to a bigger locale than its first iteration.

“It was really small at the East Side Library,” said Des Moines Public Library bilingual services assistant Marlu Abarca. “This makes me and my inner child really happy. “There are so many other Latinx kids that get to be seen and celebrated in the same way that their families and parents were celebrated in Latin America.”

The Día del Niño festivities included a bilingual story walk, free carousel rides, traditional Mexican dance, and a piñata. It also featured artistic activities, including a coloring sheet featuring Des Moines’ most notable landmarks.

More than anything, Abarca said this event is a way to encourage children to learn and read about their surroundings.

“Día del Niño is a day to celebrate kids, childhoods, and the early stages of reading,” Abarca said. “It’s very appropriate that a library is hosting this. I’m so happy to see that we can all celebrate together across cultures in the metro.”

The Des Moines Public Library plans to have Día del Niño festivities at Union Park again next year.