Viva MSU kicks off Hispanic Heritage Month

halie aldridge

Zavala International Dancers entertains MSU students while they enjoy their traditional tacos. photo by Shea James

Hispanic Heritage Month began with the second annual Viva MSU event on Sept. 15 in Legacy Courtyard.

According to Ruby Arriaga, head coordinator for student activities and grad student, the Hispanic Heritage Committee created the event.

“It’s a way to educate the community about Hispanic culture and to have a fun kick off for the event,” she said. “They have been doing this since last year and definitely want to make it bigger as the years go on.”

Volunteers  served fajitas with chicken or beef and Zavala International Dancers performed four different songs from different parts of the country. The variety of music and food connected the community through various cultural activities.

“It’s my culture, my heritage and my identity,” Arriaga said. “This year’s was a great turn out. They tried to represent all of the countries at this event because one country does not represent Hispanic Heritage Month, it’s all the countries. Each culture is different within the country.”

Different people, such as business management junior Kari Bell, like to embrace different cultures and learn new things whether it’s the music, the clothes and dancers.

“I’m all about embracing the culture and it’s a new experience for me. I was excited to see what the dancers where going to do and I also didn’t know about this event last year.”

She said what stood out to her the most was the dancers.

“It was so cute to see how cultured the kids were,” Bell said.

The best thing that brings most people together is food.

”The food was really good, the fruit was the best part and I liked the set up. The decorations were nice and the DJ played the right music for the occasion,” Bell said. ”I would definitely go back next year. The experience there was a great one.”

Jada Propes, political science junior, said she enjoyed meeting new people and seeing a new culture.

Propes said, ”I came to see what the culture had to show you and I enjoyed myself. I would definitely come back next year.”

Upcoming Hispanic Heritage Month events:

Sept. 20 at 6 p.m. | Movie screening of “Selena”

Sept. 23 at 6:30 p.m. | Soccer tailgate party

Sept. 26 at 6 p.m. | Comedian: Francisco Ramos

Sept. 28 at 7 p.m. | Hispanic Leadership Panel

Oct. 7 at 1 p.m. | Calle Ocho

Oct. 11 at 6 p.m. | Latin dance class