Hispanic Heritage Month has been widely celebrated across the U.S. for more than 40 years.
The celebrations here in the valley started earlier this afternoon, showing the importance of Hispanics in the United States.
“I was always embedded with the culture, whether it’s with the food, if it’s with music, if it’s with art, but also knowing the history of our people.” Daniel Perez Miranda, a Research Assistant at UCR says.
According to the Pew Research Center, over 62,000,000 Hispanics live in the United States, and it’s no shocker that the culture has made an influence within the country.
Here in the Coachella Valley, residents say being Hispanic means a variety of things, “Working hard to create a space within the United States for those of us that wasn’t initially created for us to succeed here.” Erika Barragan, the Executive Assistant to the Superintendent of Palm Springs Unified School District says.
With multiple different cultures making up the Hispanic population.
“I’ve been able to connect with our Hispanic community here in the valley and whether they’re, whatever culture they’re from, or country they originated from, it’s been wonderful for me to be able to connect with them, but really, most importantly, help them prosper.” Dr. Tony Signoret, the Interim Superintendent for PSUSD says.
While many use the words Latino and Hispanic interchangeably, they mean very different things.
A Hispanic person is someone who comes from or is a descendant of a Spanish-speaking country, while Latino refers to someone who comes from Latin America, or is a descendant from a Latin American country.
The similarities between the two, bonding people, everywhere.
“I just always find it very comfortable when I talk to other folks that are Hispanic, that are Latino, because we have a lot to relate with. We have so many things that are cross culture, if it’s music, if it’s not regionally from my place, but I’m into it. I love just like hanging out with people that are my people, understanding our struggles, understanding what makes us tick, and just having fun and knowing that it’s a blessing interacting with one another.” Miranda says.
A number of residents are celebrating their culture Saturday and Sunday. Saturday, Luchador in Cathedral City hosting their first ever Michelada festival in honor of Mexican Independence Day. Sunday, the City of Coachella celebrates Fiestas Patrias, a community filled day with food vendors and live music.