Columbia Association (CA) once again invites community members to celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month at Día de la Familia, a free event taking place on Saturday, Sept. 28, from 3 to 6 p.m. at the Columbia SportsPark.
This is the 11th year CA has hosted Día de la Familia, or Family Day. This year’s event will include Latin music and dancing; dance competitions; food; face painting and balloon animals; a moon bounce; arts and crafts sponsored by Columbia Art Center; Zumba®; “Latin American Soccer Cup” soccer matches; and the SportsPark’s batting cages and mini golf — all for free.
“This is a very popular event with the Hispanic community,” said Laura Smit, CA’s program manager for International Exchange and Multicultural Programs. “It’s not just for Hispanic people, though. It’s for anybody who loves Latin music and culture.”
CA has sponsored Día de la Familia, initially called Día De La Familia Hispana, since 2003. The event grew out of gatherings of local Hispanic residents and began as part of an effort alongside community groups such as Conexiones to increase foreign-born residents’ awareness of CA and help ease their transition into the area, all while coinciding with National Hispanic Heritage Month.
National Hispanic Heritage Month “started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover a 30-day period starting on Sept. 15 and ending on Oct. 15,” according to HispanicHeritageMonth.gov, which noted that the independence days for Chile, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico and Nicaragua all fall between Sept. 15 and Sept. 18, while Día de la Raza, or Columbus Day, is Oct. 12.
For more information, contact Laura Smit at 410-715-3162 or via email at International@ColumbiaAssociation.org.