Hispanic Food Festival Held at Mount Union College

April 08, 2010

The third annual Mount Union College Hispanic Heritage Food Festival was held yesterday in the Hoover-Price Campus Center to promote awareness of Hispanic culture within the Mount Union community.

Hispanic culture has become increasingly important in recent years. 'The interest in Spanish is growing,' said Dr. Clara Becerra, assistant professor of Spanish. She said the demand for Spanish classes has increased in the six years she has been at Mount Union, perhaps because Hispanics are now the largest minority in the United States.

Becerra said events such as the Hispanic Heritage Food Festival are important 'for culture and awareness.' She said, 'People need to understand that Hispanic is not just Mexico and Spain.'

Tori Snyder, the current coordinator of Hispanic Heritage month, echoed this sentiment about the impact this event has on the Mount Union community. 'If nothing else, people are aware of Hispanic food that is not Taco Bell.'

The Hispanic Heritage Food Festival featured different types of delicious food including: salsa, refried beans, chorizo (which is like a sausage), perlin (pork), quesadillas, empedias, Tres Leche cake, chili brownies and cookies among other items.

Snyder said, 'I am so excited that we had as many people as we did. Everyone was receptive to trying new foods.'

Reactions from attendants were positive and enthusiastic.

Jan Behner, secretary to the vice president for student affairs and dean of students, said, 'It was wonderful. I think each year it gets better and better.'

'I think it's a really good idea to do a Hispanic festival for American people to get closer to Hispanic culture and civilization,' said Ainara Blanco, Spanish teaching assistant.

Another student who was actively involved with the Hispanic Heritage Food Festival was Rachel Camargo, a junior psychology major. She said Snyder told her about the Festival, and she offered to help. Camargo also said her family helped to cook and organize the Festival. She said, 'I wanted to give Mount Union more culture.' Camargo will probably take over the Festival next year. She hopes to introduce more activities to the Festival, such as dancing.

The Hispanic Heritage Food Festival falls during Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs from September 15 to October 15.

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