Dancers, Tejano singers, and mariachi were just a few of the performances enjoyed by hundreds of people who attended Manor ISD’s first district-wide Hispanic Heritage Festival on Oct. 17th, at New Tech Middle School.
A collaborative effort of the Manor ISD Multilingual and Fine Arts departments, preparation for the festival began in September, according to Renferd Joseph, Manor ISD’s Director of Fine Arts. And the preparation paid off, as attendance at the first district-wide Hispanic Heritage Festival was standing room only.
Attendees were treated to a variety of acts from Manor ISD students. Several groups of dancers performed, poetry was read, and singers delivered both powerful and lifting songs in Spanish. Students displayed arts and crafts representing different aspects of Hispanic culture from 23 countries, and the food was provided by Casa Garcia’s Mexican Restaurant.
In addition to entertainment, the festival was an educational experience MC’d by Hazel Martinez and Dora Rodriguez. Each stage performance was preceded by an informative history of a Latin American country delivered in both English and Spanish languages.
“This Hispanic Heritage Festival was a way to invite our community in, hear about our programming and our plan for dual language expansion, but also to showcase some other initiatives that we have going on with regards to our fine arts programming, our IB programming, and our tech programming with our New Tech model” said Meredith Roddy, Director of Bilingual and ESL Programs for Manor ISD. “We are a district of innovation, and all of the programs that we design are there to give students the greatest opportunity that we can for an incredible world-class education.”
The Hispanic Heritage Festival was part of Manor ISD’s recognition of Hispanic Heritage Month, a month-long national celebration of Hispanic culture and its enrichment of the United States.