Arts & Humanities Society & Culture

UGA, Athens community to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month

Athens, Ga. – Members of the University of Georgia and Athens community will host Hispanic Heritage Month events throughout September and October this year. The celebration, nationally recognized Sept. 15 to Oct. 15, honors the contributions of Hispanic Americans in the U.S. while highlighting the diverse heritage and cultures of Latin America.

Events at UGA and throughout Athens include the annual Latin American Film Festival, lectures, dance performances and fiestas. The Latin American and Caribbean Studies Institute, part of the UGA Franklin College of Arts and Sciences, is sponsoring many of the events.

The month-long celebration covers important dates in the history of many Latin American countries. Sept. 15 is the anniversary of independence for Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on Sept. 16 and 18, respectively. Columbus Day on Oct. 12-or Día de la Raza-also falls within the 30-day period.

Events occurring during Hispanic Heritage Month are listed below. Unless otherwise noted, all events are free and open to the public. Latin American Film Festival showings are listed together after the other events.

Sept. 14 – Latin American and Caribbean Studies Institute Open House
LACSI will hold its annual Hispanic Heritage Month open house on Sept. 14 from 3-6 p.m. in its office on 290 South Hull St. The program will feature live Latin American music by Incatepec, traditional Latin American food and a Capoeira martial art/dance demonstration by the Atlanta-based Ballet Folklórico Danceando. The event is supported in part by the President’s Venture Fund and sponsorship from the Instituto de Mexico in Atlanta, the UGA Portuguese flagship program, the UGA department of romance languages, Students for Latino/a Empowerment and Jittery Joe’s Coffee.

Sept. 14 to Nov. 12 – Day of the Dead: Passion for Life Photo Exhibit
Sponsored by the Instituto de Mexico, LACSI will display 21 photos from journalist and author Mary J. Andrade’s collection in its office. In 1987, Andrade began researching Day of the Dead celebrations on Janitzio Island in the Mexican state of Michoacan. Every year in October, she visits a different state to gather information and to photograph a tradition that originated during the pre-Hispanic era and has become an integral element of the Mexican spirit and culture. Day of the Dead is celebrated Nov. 1-2 in Mexico.

Sept. 16 – El Grito de Independencia
El Grito de Independencia fiesta, sponsored by the Pinewood Estates North neighborhood and the Pinewood Estates Library, will feature traditional Mexican food, music by Jorge y Amigos and DJ Boricua, traditional dance by Tonalli, children’s activities and crafts. It will be held from noon to 3 p.m. at 1465 Highway 29 North, Lot G-10.

Sept. 24 – Latin American Trivia and Empanada Sale
Lambda Theta Alpha Latin Sorority, Delta Alpha Chapter will host a Latin American trivia time and empanada sale from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the Tate Student Center Plaza. Empanadas-with fillings such as beef, chicken and cheese-will be $2 each.

Sept. 26 – Presentation of the Latin American Film Festival at LACSI
Actress Sonia Guedes, who plays the main character in “Historias que so existem quando lembradas,” will be discussing the Brazilian film translated “Stories only exist when remembered” at 5 p.m. in the LACSI office.

Oct. 3 – Voto Latino
Hispanic, Latino and Latina student organizations will be holding a voter registration drive from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the Tate Student Center Plaza.

Oct. 20 – Latino Fest 2012
Latino Fest will be hosted from noon to 5 p.m. by the Athens non-profit organization Casa de Amistad. The community event is a celebration of Hispanic culture and contributions in the community, state and country. The event will feature traditional Latin American food, live music, dancing, crafts, children’s activities and tables representing the countries of Latin America. For more information, see Casa de Amistad is located at 1685 Commerce Road, off of Highway 441 North past the Sandy Creek Nature Center.

Oct. 20 – Noche Latina: Noche de Encanto
The UGA Hispanic Student Association’s annual event will be held from 6:30-10 p.m. in the Tate Student Center Grand Hall and will feature Latin American music, dance and other artistic performances. The cost is $5 for students and $8 for non-students.

Oct. 28 – Bravo! Festival Latino 2012
The fundraising event-hosted by the Athens Latino Center for Education and Services, or ALCES, in cooperation with Ashford Manor and Univision Atlanta-will be held from 2-7 p.m. at Ashford Manor located at No. 5 Harden Hill Road in Watkinsville. The festival will include artists, live music, children’s activities, a village of countries representing Latin America and traditional food, drink and crafts. For more information on ALCES, see

Oct. 30 – Voces Unidas
The UGA Hispanic Student Association will hold an information session at 8 p.m. in the Memorial Hall Ballroom for people interested in learning about the issues currently facing Hispanics.

Nov. 1 – Día de los Muertos
Day of the Dead will be celebrated at UGA at 7 p.m. on the Tate Student Center Plaza. Traditions on Day of the Dead include building private altars honoring the deceased and decorating them with sugar skulls, marigolds and the favorite foods and beverages of the departed. Students for Latino/a Empowerment at UGA will celebrate the day by building “altares” to pay tribute to people who recently died for noble causes or were victims of tragedy.

Sept. 27 to Nov. 1 – Latin American Film Festival 2012: Latin American Women Behind the Camera
Starting with the pioneer Carmen Santos from Brazil, women have played a key role in the development of the film industry in the Latin American region. This year, the Latin American Film Festival selection committee chose four recent movies directed by women that deal with gender issues and offer a distinct point of view on the social, historical and political problems in Brazil, Mexico, Venezuela and Chile.

The films will be screened every Thursday starting Sept. 27 at 7 p.m. in the M. Smith Griffith Auditorium of the Georgia Museum of Art. Admission to the blue card event is free, and a UGA faculty member or a graduate student will introduce the film and lead a discussion after the screenings.

Sept. 27 – Historias que so existem quando lembradas (Brazil 2011)
The film, translated “Stories only exist when remembered,” will be introduced by UGA doctoral student Cris Lira with an additional presentation by actress Sonia Guedes, who plays the film’s protagonist. A question and answer session with Guedes and Lira will follow the viewing.

Oct. 4 – Postales de Leningrado (Venezuela 2007)
The film, translated “Postcards from Leningrad,” will be introduced by film studies graduate student Lorraine Anne Lynch and will be followed by question and answer session.

Oct. 11 – Las buenas hierbas (Mexico 2010)
This film, translated “The Good Herbs,” will be introduced by romance languages associate professor Mark Anderson. A question and answer session with director María Novaro via Skype will follow the screening.

Oct. 18 – Locas mujeres (Chile 2011)
This film, translated “Madwomen,” will be introduced by romance languages professor Luís Correa Díaz. A question and answer session with director María Elena Wood via Skype will follow the screening.

For more information about the events, see