The cultures of Latin America are extremely rich and span thousands of years. On May 31, El Centro Latino celebrated these cultures by holding Latin-X night. “It’s all about vibes tonight,” said Catherine Madrigal, coordinator for El Centro Latino, “You can tell from the tables and from the flags that they represent every country.” Approximately 125 people attended the event.
The celebration started at 6:00 p.m. The C-building cafeteria was decorated with the flags of Latin America. Streamers connected each beam together. Sandy Miranda, president of Latin American Culture Club, and her brother welcomed everyone one in. The energy in the room was electric. DJ Chivo was at the front of the room playing Latin Music for everyone to enjoy. There was an impressive, multicolored balloon arch positioned right behind him.
The night started with an authentic Mexican meal. The table in the back of the cafeteria was covered with “enchiladas verdes de puerco,” which is an enchilada with green sauce, “tinga de pollo,”a shredded chicken dish and “arroz y frijoles,” or rice and beans. Every single item that was served was absolutely delicious.
As soon as dinner wrapped up, a group of Aztec dancers came out and performed several traditional dances. They were dressed in handmade customary clothing that was stunning. They were only using drums and shells to create the rhythm required to create the perfect conditions for this ceremony.
Afterwards, the MC’s announced that desert was ready. It was a beautiful flan that looked delicious. The chefs they brought in to prepare the dishes were top notch.
At around 8:00 p.m. the children got to play an intense bout of musical chairs. The winner was awarded a gift that was donated by the Black Student Union. After the winner was crowned, a pinata was dangled from the ceiling. Children cheered as the pinata exploded and candy fell out.
El Centro Latino and LACC has been planning this event for months and it really showed. “It took a lot of work, and I’m glad that all of us officers and Catherine came together and came up with different ideas,” said Miranda. “We had amazing group members who input a lot of their own ideas.” As a person who is Latin-X, it was amazing to see all these cultures that are often forgotten about or not given very much attention right in the spotlight. It speaks volumes about the inclusive campus that Bellevue College and its students are trying to facilitate.