Hispanic Heritage Month In Corpus Christi
Corpus Christi and Hispanic culture go hand in hand. Our cultura is engrained in the foods we eat, the music we listen to and the pride we share for the countless contributions that our ancestors have provided to South Texas and our country.
September 15 kicks off Hispanic Heritage month in the United States where we will celebrate and honor Hispanic culture through October 15. This honor goes back to 1968 when the nation began formally observing Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson. In 1988, President Ronald Reagan expanded the week to cover a 30-day period and it was later made into law that same year. Corpus Christi will join in the celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month with fun, food and arts and culture. Enjoy the Dies y Seis de Septiembre Festival & Mercado with traditional Mariachi music and Folkorico dancing! Hosted by the United Corpus Christi Chamber of Commerce, visitors can find artisan vendors from Mexico, as well as local and neighboring regions, live music and street dancing throughout the festival. Make sure to listen to some of the best gritos around or experience some of the best food and food trucks that Corpus Christi has to offer!
Friday, September 16, 2016
5:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m.
Ortiz International Center
History buffs should Google the name Hector P. Garcia to kick off Hispanic Heritage Month. The Mexican-American physician was the founder of civil rights group the American G.I. Forum. In 1968, Dr. Hector (as the locals lovingly call him), was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor. Dr. Hector is one of Corpus Christi’s most revered residents and a prime example of why Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated today. His contributions to medicine and fighting for equality give us all a lesson on how to be a voice for others.
For almost 40 years, the Instituto de Cultura Hispanica de Corpus Christi has enhanced and promoted an understanding of the different aspects of life within different Hispanic cultures in Corpus Christi. The museum at Heritage Park features art exhibits, folkloric displays, English and Spanish recitals, cultural celebrations and several activities throughout the year that teach us about the people of Spain, Hispanic America and the United States. The Tejano Civil Rights Museum and Resource Center at Heritage Park is another place to learn about the region’s rich history of the Hispanic civil rights movement and the Tejano and Mexican-American culture of South Texas.
If music is more your style then celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with the music of Tejano Queen Selena Quintanilla Perez. Selena loved her Corpus Christi and never missed a chance to give Corpus Christi a shout out whenever she was interviewed. Her songs continue to enrich this city both at the Selena Museum and the Selena Mirardor de la Flor on Shoreline Blvd.
Want to throw a party? The Galvan Ballroom, located at 1632 Agnes Street in Corpus Christi, played an important role in the musical and cultural development of the city in the 1950s. According to the Texas State Historical Association, the establishment was owned by Corpus Christi police officer, entrepreneur, and musician Rafael Galvan, Sr., who sought to open a permanent venue for the Galvan Orchestra. The fifteen-piece ensemble, the largest orchestra in Corpus Christi at that time, organized and began performing in January 1947 and featured Galvan and his four sons. The Galvan established its reputation as the place to go for high-quality big band, swing, and jazz music. Today, you can rent it out and it can be the backdrop for your wedding, Quinceñera or birthday party.
As you can see, Corpus Christi and Hispanic culture go way back. And we have only scratched the surface! Visit Corpus Christi during Hispanic Heritage Month as we continue to delve deep into our cultura and tell the stories of the people and places that make Corpus Christi home. We will ask our locals to weigh in and tell us about their favorite places to grab a margarita, fajitas and more. Our Throwback Thursdays will feature some of the city’s pioneers. The men and women who were trendsetters and helped shape our city. Viva Corpus Christi!