Baile Folklorico Came to SAC to Honor Hispanic Heritage

Folklorico dancers performing at SAC's Hispanic Heritage celebration. / Christabelle Blake / el Don

Folklorico dancers performing at SAC’s Hispanic Heritage celebration. / Christabelle Blake / el Don

With a colorful dress and quick footwork, folklorico dancers kept the attention of Santa Ana College students during a Hispanic Heritage Month celebration Wednesday.

To honor the contributions Hispanic and Latinos have made in the United States, the Associated Student Government brought art, food, poetry and more to a make shift quad in front of the Johnson Center.

“The demographics of this campus is highly Hispanic, highly Latino based and it’s important for us to showcase not only the art but celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month,” ASG President Luis Mejia said.

Paintings, pottery, jewelry and artifacts that could be found in a traditional Latino home were just a few of the items displayed during the event.  Students also enjoyed some refreshments such as horchata and snacks like pan dulce while listening to poetry and speeches.

“This culture has a lot of history and heritage,” Santiago Chamu ASG’s Senator for technology, said.

The event informed non-Hispanic students of some of their classmates’ traditions. For those who were Hispanic, it gave them a platform to showcase their art.

Professional folklorico dancer Madeline Peña, a student at Fullerton College said she jumped at the chance to perform at SAC.

“Cultural awareness is a big problem right now, people are making fun of different cultures. Saying things because they don’t really understand so I think that it would help to educate the students more,” said Peña who is second generation and uses dance to stay connected to her roots.

“I thought it was really cool that you guys have this because I know that they don’t do this at Fullerton College just so the students can see this and learn about different heritages.”

Muralist Marina “La Artista” Aguilera brought some of her art to educate students on influential Hispanic women like Dolores Del Rio, the famous silent film actress. Her art focuses on strong Latinas.

While walking through campus, English major Stasy Sandoval found herself drawn to the event by the cumbia, merengue and ranchera music blasting through the speakers. She looked through the displays and eventually got an autograph from Aguilera.

“I really liked the art pieces and the paintings. For example, the one with the girl is very empowering and I also liked the clothes that they showed,” said Sandoval.

This year’s event faced several obstacles. In addition to being postponed for two weeks, campus wide construction made finding a location difficult not to mention fitting the event in everyone’s schedules. Still, students were present to enjoy a culture so many are a part of.

“I think with all of the setbacks we were already set with, I think today was really successful for the situation that we’re in right now with the campus,” said Mejia.