On Friday, Oct. 16, at 6 p.m. in the CSU Ballroom, students from various countries like Venezuela, Guatemala, Peru, Uruguay, Paraguay, Mexico, Honduras and various other Central and South American countries, along with the Caribbean, participated in Latino Night.
Guadalope Quintero, director of community partnership, helped promote the event, and said the purpose of the event was to “share our culture event planned by students.”
MNSU student Ramiro Leonardo Vinan Vega also spoke about the purpose of the event:
“We expect to fill our audience with joy by sharing with them part of Latino culture. Latino night’s purpose is to show as much as we can of Latino culture, resembling our feelings towards home, and if we can make our audience to feel the same, we will have reached our highest expectation.”
The event itself was packed to the brim with students and members of the community. Various reserved tables had to be unreserved in order to accommodate.
“We expected the event to be bigger than previous years,” Vega said. “We ran out of tickets the first day they went on sale. We had to put some extra tables up to fit all the people. This has never happened before.”
Vega also commented about what various Spanish speaking countries would be involved and what the results would be, saying, “We have performances from all over Latin America, from Peru and Colombia, to even Venezuela. This shows our sense of unity, and the richness of our culture. Latin America consists of all the Spanish speaking countries in Central America and South America, from the Patagonia at the south of Chile to the border at the North of Mexico.”
The food that was served was grilled chicken, glazed carrots and cheesy potato scallops as the main course. Tomato and lettuce salad and bread with butter cups to spread upon as the sides and from the very beginning, before guests were told when to go up and get their meals, there was a snack bar near the entrance to the ballroom. While guests were getting food and conversing with each other, a mariachi band had been playing the entire time.
Traditional dances like those from Peru, Columbia and Venezuela, while wearing the traditional clothing of their respected countries, performed for the guests in a very entertaining manner. Various Latino students sang various songs in Spanish, too.
Combined with the meal and the evening’s entertainment, it proved to be a very enlightening experience for all who attended.
On a final note, Vega commented, “As a person who helped in the preparation of the night, I must say that all that hard work was worth it when I saw the enjoyment of the audience. Even though we had some difficulties, it really feels like we accomplished our objective of showing how rich the Latino culture is, and gave a small taste of what being Latino means to us, which is a lot more than just speaking Spanish or dance music.”