Heritage Center adds some Hispanic flavor

By and

The Residence Hall Association and cooks at the Heritage Center prepared a Hispanic-themed dinner Tuesday night to vary the menu and promote cultural awareness.

This is “important in creating a welcoming environment, one small part of the work we need to do in the area of diversity education,” said Steve Nygaard, director of residential living.

Members of the Heritage Center cooking staff, who come from places such as Mexico, Colombia and Chile, brought in their own recipes.

The cooks started preparing four days before the dinner. They served recipes from several South and Central American countries including Chile, Peru, Bolivia, Argentina, Cuba and Guatemala.

“It’s great that they’re doing the dinner for multicultural awareness, but I’m excited they have Chilean-style empanadas. I only get to eat my Dad’s a couple times a year,” student Nicol Razon said.

Several students said they enjoyed the food. “The steak (from Argentina) is pretty good, and so are the cookies,” Delfino Arevalo said. A particular favorite was the tamales, which quickly disappeared from the serving trays.

While eating, Costa Caliente, a salsa/jazz band from Southern California, treated students to live music. Doc Miller, founder of Costa Caliente and piano player for the group, described his music as “from the ’40s and ’50s, a combination of salsa and mamba.”

South American flags covered the walls of the Heritage Center. On the walls hung pictures of the 2004 Hispanic Heritage Winners, all of whom made a difference in education, sports and literature.

This Hispanic dinner was just the first in a series of themed meals that will be served in the Heritage Center. Upcoming meals may include Navajo Tacos, Oktoberfest food (German), and a special Halloween party.

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