Hispanic Heritage Month closing ceremony celebrates Latinx culture

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Photo by Nijat Mamtimen

The closing ceremony included folkloric dance performances.

Nijat Mamtimen, Staff Writer

The Latinx Center closed out Hispanic Heritage Month, hosting a closing ceremony in the USU Ballroom on Oct. 16.

The event was not exclusive to Hispanic students, welcoming students of all backgrounds to enjoy performances, traditional games and food.

Hispanic Heritage Month celebrates the Hispanic community from North America to South America. The closing ceremony gave the Latinx Center and its constituents an opportunity to be heard and display their unique traditions with the campus community, such as Folkloric dancing.

Chanel Tran, a first-year student at CSUSM said that her friend introduced her to the event, and as an Asian student, she gained knowledge as to the Latin heritages: dances, games, and foods.

Raquel Coronado, leadership ambassador for the Latinx Center, introduced the Day of the Dead event that will be held on Oct. 28 at 9 a.m. The holiday is a cultural event dating back to the pre-hispanic traditions of the Aztecs.

The Day of the Dead is one of three days in which Mexican culture celebrates their deceased ancestors through rituals, offerings and an altar. The Latinx Center has made its own altar, which can be viewed on the third floor of the USU in front of their office.

The celebration of Heritage Month became an essential part of the Latinx community at CSUSM.

“I have been at Cal State San Marcos for three years. Every year we celebrate Heritage Month with Latino students and their families during the days between Sept. 15 to Oct. 15, since I was the director of Latino Faith. Now, we have programs throughout the entire year to celebrate our culture and roots. We will use music and art through cultural dialogs to introduce the history of the community,” said the director of the Latino Latinx Center, Dr. Renzo Lara.

“The Heritage Month is close to ending, and so we have brought the live band, invited the students’ families, friends and siblings to bring them together as a community to celebrate their culture and heritage,” said Lara.

Gustavo Alcoser, the lead singer of the Jarabe Mexicana, performed songs with high notes and long-lasting durations that made many listeners applaud. The band was filled with energy as they danced with the singer and engaged the audience to participate.

“Latino folks used to partake in the National Hispanic Heritage Month since the tradition was respectful among their society,” said Alcoser.

Despite the appreciation of the Latin traditions, the COVID-19 has restricted the crowds from gathering and celebrating their customs. Nevertheless, Alcoser hopes more events will be held after the post-pandemic.

After several performances, attendees went to the food serving section to eat freshly made pupusas filled with different proteins: chicken, pork or cheese. Pupusa is molded in a round ship with corn flour and commonly eaten with meats and beans in El Salvador.

Readers can find more information about the recipe, history and making process at https://tastesbetterfromscratch.com/pupusas/.

The night was a cultural experience worth the experience. While you may have to wait for a year to experience the next Hispanic Heritage month, students are encouraged to attend events hosted by the Latinx center all year round.

The Cougar Chronicle: The independent student news site of California State University, San Marcos