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After more than 2 years of pandemic, crowds again gather for Grito de Independencia in Sonora

After two years of pandemic interruptions, the crowds were back for the annual independence celebration in neighboring Sonora.

With the multitudes screaming below, Sonoran Gov. Alfonso Durazo stepped out onto the state government palace balcony Thursday evening and took hold of a red, white and green bell rope, and let loose a series of loud peels.

And then came the traditional Grito de Independencia, marking the 212th anniversary of the start of Mexico’s war for independence.

“My fellow Sonorans, long live the heroes and heroines who gave us our country!” Durazo exclaimed in Spanish.

“¡Vivan!” the crowd erupted in unison.

Fireworks have traditionally been a climactic flourish during the Grito in Hermosillo, but this year drones took to the sky, spelling out Sonora and Mexico in lights, as well as drawing the state’s and country’s outlines. Authorities say it was an effort to avoid terrifying pets in surrounding neighborhoods.

Born and raised in the Intermountain West, Murphy Woodhouse has called southern Arizona home for most of the last decade. He’s one of two field correspondents at KJZZ’s Hermosillo bureau, where his reporting focuses on the trade relationship between Arizona, Sonora and the rest of Mexico.Before joining the station, Murphy was a reporter at the Arizona Daily Star and the Nogales International. Prior to his reporting career, he completed a master’s degree at the University of Arizona’s Center for Latin American Studies and did three wildfire seasons with the Snake River Hotshots. He’s a proud graduate of the University of Montana’s School of Journalism.When he’s not reporting, Murphy is often out in the woods running or riding singletrack, or swinging in a hammock with a book.