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Saturday, June 25, 2022


Cougars celebrate Hispanic heritage

Students crowded the UC Arbor for food, music and games Thursday as part of the 4th annual Hispanic Heritage Month Celebration.

The event was created as a joint effort between the fraternity Lambda Theta Phi and the sorority Lambda Theta Alpha, with additional funding provided by the Activities Funding Board. Abigail Guevara, a communications junior and the president of Lambda Theta Alpha, said that the celebration was an important way to promote Latin cultural awareness.

“(It’s) a way of empowering not only Latinos but everyone in the community,” Guevara said. “Our event focuses on our heritage so we understand more about our traditions, and as Latinos we can be proud to know that there’s so much rich history for us to learn about.”

Ezekiel Escareno, a construction management senior, helped organize the event as a member of Lambda Theta Phi. He explained the efforts of everyone involved was a result of a passion for their culture.

“We all got together to show diversity,” Escareno said. “This is our way to celebrate Hispanic heritage.”

Construction management junior Santos Tovar serves as president of Lambda Theta Phi. He said the celebration is one of the largest annual events for the two organizations, and that it teaches visitors a great deal about his heritage.

“We’re celebrating Hispanic culture and the Latino background that describes where they come from,” Tovar said. “We have tons of cultural food like empanadas and tamales, and we even brought in a piñata too. We made them all for this event.”

Students who visited the festivities were treated to a live mariachi band and had an opportunity to participate in events such as a tamale-eating contest and a piñata. Others lined up to taste smorgasbord of Latin cuisine, which included dishes such as pupusas, pan dulce and charamuscas.

Computer science senior Josh Riffel said that he enjoyed tasting the numerous cultural dishes.

“This horchata is pretty cool,” Riffel said. “I haven’t tried it before.”

Sarai Hernandez, a UScholar student, said she enjoyed everything the event had to offer, and that it provided an excellent introduction to Latino culture.

“They have tamales and Mexican drinks and a mariachi band — everything that really represents Hispanic heritage,” Hernandez said.

“I didn’t know so many organizations were dedicated to Hispanics.”

Clarita Montant, an international student with the Language and Culture Center program, valued the perspective the event offered visitors.

“I like it. It’s interesting, and you can get an overview of different cultures,” Montant said.

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