Hispanic Heritage Month continues with fire
Posted on Oct 02, 2012 in News
Last week, the Spanish and Latino Student Association (S.A.L.S.A) hosted the first-ever Latin Fire Festival to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month.
Hispanic Heritage Month is the period from September 15 to October 15, and is dedicated to recognize Hispanic and Latin Americans’ contributions as well as to celebrate the group’s heritage and culture.
In 1968, Hispanic Heritage Week was established under Lyndon Johnson’s Presidency. Twenty years later, President Ronald Reagan approved the Public Law 100-402, an amendment that expanded the week-long celebration to a month.
The beginning of Hispanic Heritage Month, September 15, was chosen because five Latin American countries–Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua–share this date as the anniversary of their independence.
The festival was a night filled with live Hispanic music by DJ Paco, Corazon Azteca, Mariachi Singers; dancing by Toshio and Danny, and Break Dancers “Los Flores”; food and more.
“Under the circumstances, us Hispanics are currently facing in Alabama, S.A.L.S.A hopes that Hispanic Heritage Month and the Latin Fire Festival has made a clearer vision of what our culture is,” said Diana Padilla, S.A.L.S.A Education and Outreach Officer.
The organization raised money for future events by selling authentic food from Mexico, Colombia, Venezuela, Nicaragua, El Salvador, and other countries with the help of local Hispanic businesses including Mi Pueblo Supermarket, Margarita Grill, and more.
“I love the fact that many students came out to support us by buying food, singing, dancing, and learning about our culture, which made for a memorable night. S.A.L.S.A officers and members can’t not wait for next year’s event!” said Padilla.
“The outstanding student participation in this event [Latin Fire Festival] and other Hispanic Heritage Month events, such as Rosario Dawson’s lecture, gives me hope that sometime in the future, Hispanics will not be seen as targets for discrimination and be able to live in an ignorance-free world,” said Padilla.
S.A.L.S.A’s next event to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month is Fiesta, Alabama’s tenth Annual celebration of Hispanic culture and heritage. The festival will educate the public about the many Hispanic countries and cultures by presenting the best of Hispanic art, music, food, and dance. Fiesta will be held at Linn Park on October 13, 12-8 p.m. Upcoming events for the month-long celebration include lectures, interest group meetings, a documentary, and a scholarship informational.