NW Fiesta spices it up – NW Campus holds Hispanic cultural event with food and activities

NW student and ALAS member Bertha Martinez plays her guitar “Luna” onstage during the Fiesta event. Photos by Ariel Desantiago/The Collegian
NW student and ALAS member Bertha Martinez plays her
guitar “Luna” onstage during the Fiesta event.
Photos by Ariel Desantiago/The Collegian

campus editor

Churros, tacos and paletas! Students made their way through a delicious celebration of Hispanic cultural heritage on NW Campus. 

NW Student Activities partnered with the Intercultural Network, the Spanish department and Walsh Library to host Fiesta Northwest on Sept. 29. The event was held as part of the celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month. 

The downstairs lobby of the WTLO building was bustling with activity at every table. Students lined up to get a taste of some of the most popular treats Hispanic culture has to offer. 

The event would not have been complete without celebrating the taco. This delicacy is a staple in many Hispanic communities. Every culture does it a bit differently and it was available with beef in a corn tortilla for this event.  

The ALAS club, which is the Association of Latin American Students, was there to inform students about the organization and offer dessert. They had churros, which are deep-fried dough coated in cinnamon sugar.

For those that like the sweet and spicy combo there were mango lollipops coated in chili powder.

There was also a paletero cart where staff was handing out ice creams or paletas to a long line of students. 

For the crafty student there was a pinata station. The pinata is a colorful papier-mache container usually filled with candy for parties. 

There was bright colored tissue paper laid out on the table. Students could help glue strips or make a flower to add to the pinata.

  A table showcasing different flags of Latin American countries was set out for students to color. The Colombian flag as well as Uruguay and Nicaragua were just a few. 

NW Spanish associate professor Alejandro Garza was looking up the

appropriate colors of different flags for students who had never seen them before.

  Garza wanted to show “students and faculty members and staff members that Hispanic Heritage Month is not only about Mexico, it’s about every country that speaks Spanish.” 

The event was also an opportunity for Hispanic students to feel closer to their culture, and NW student Omar Ortega was there to do just that. 

 “All my teachers only spoke English so I grew up on American soil with a Mexican family,” Ortega said.

Ortega says because of this, “even though I grew up with a Spanish family I was only able to speak English.”

The Intercultural Network was hosting a game of Loteria. One of these students was Samantha Ramirez of NW Campus who wanted to share her culture with other students. 

“I have friends here that they don’t know what Lotería is and I find it cool that I get to share that type of experience with them,” she said.

Ramirez showed her friends how to play as some of them had never

heard of the game before. “I find it very exciting to be able to share my culture with other people,” she said.

Taha Akif, a NW student from Morocco did not have any background in playing the game before. He is part of the Intercultural Network and is trying to get to know more about other cultures. Akif says the event has exposed him to “new stuff that I didn’t really know about.”

The fiesta offered many ways to engage in Hispanic culture for every student. Those wanting to share their culture with others and those wanting to learn.