Hispanic Heritage Festival hosted by Spanish National Honor Society

October 9, 2014
Arnav Damodhar | Staff Writer
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Hispanic students perform a traditional dance.

Mason High School was blazing with Hispanic heritage and culture on Tuesday afternoon.

The Spanish National Honor Society hosted its fourth annual Spanish Heritage Festival. More than 525 students gathered to an afternoon filled with dancing, singing, face painting, and an unbelievable spread of Hispanic food. A professional merengue and salsa dance instructor swept the dance floor. Noteorious, a Mason choral group, also came in to sing some of their compositions.

Watch Noteorious’ performance.

According to advisor Amy Ortega, the purpose of the festival is to recognize Hispanic culture and celebrate the achievements of Hispanics.

“The festival is something we organized when we began the Spanish National Honor Society recognizing the Hispanic culture and the achievements of Hispanics, not only nationally but also locally,” Amy said. “This is mostly to provide awareness for all the Spanish students as well as anyone else who wants to learn more about the fantastic Hispanic community we have here in Mason.”

According to Ortega, the student body was very involved in this. Spanish National Honor Society even conducted a Hispanic Spirit Week prior to the festival, and they sold tickets to Mason Middle School.

“We had spirit week for the first time this year,” Amy said. “We got approval from administration to have one. It wasn’t overly successful, but it was only approved last minute. There are also trivia questions in the morning, recognizing well known Hispanics. This year, we have made quite a connection with the middle school. We sold tickets at the middle school and the Spanish students from the middle school came over too.”

Though the festival was a huge success, a lot of organizing and planning was necessary. According to cabinet member Clara Ortega, the logistics and planning regard the Heritage Festival began in the summer.

“We have been planning this since the summer,” Clara said. “It’s really hard to contact groups that are involved. It was hard to get the Colombian dancers and Noteorious, the choral group to come in, since we didn’t have their contact information. Planning the date was the hardest thing. It was really hard to find a date to find a date for everyone in the Society to meet.”

According to Ortega, there will also be upcoming events conducted by the Spanish National Honor Society.

“The society is doing an activity called Los Regalos in the winter,” Clara said.  “It is an activity to get people to donate money which will be given to unfortunate Hispanics for gifts. We are also doing the World Cup in spring. We are getting all of the other honor societies such as Art Honor Society and French Honor Society to form soccer teams representing different countries and play against each other. I am really looking forward to it.”