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Schools celebrate Hispanic heritage

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Posted: Sunday, October 9, 2005 12:00 pm | Updated: 3:15 pm, Wed Aug 15, 2012.

By Don Bolding

Killeen Daily Herald

An experiment paid off big for organizers of the Hispanic Heritage Celebration in Killeen schools Saturday. More than 500 people attended a combined program in the morning and early afternoon at Clifton Park Elementary School.

In prior years, Hispanic celebrations have been staged in the autumn at the five campuses that have bilingual programs and bilingual parent liaisons. But this year, organizers decided to combine the separate celebrations into one district-wide event.

Parents set up tables with foods from their native lands, including Mexico, Puerto Rico, Panama, Ecuador and Venezuela.

We didnt realize all these people were here, said Puerto Rican native Idamari de Gracia, a parent liaison at Peebles Elementary School. Its mainly because of Fort Hood. They move here because of family connections and decide to stay.

Besides Clifton Park and Peebles, bilingual programs are included at Pershing Park, Oveta Culp Hobby and Harker Heights elementary schools.

A program in the auditorium included appearances by the 1st Cavalry Band, the Pershing Park Dancers, Folklore America Dancers, Jibaro Jam, and the Puerto Rico Folk Kids Dance Group. Business sponsors included Texas Motor Sports, H.E.B., Creative Cuts and La Horradurra restaurant in Copperas Cove.

De Gracia and Ada Martinez, a bilingual parents liaison at Clifton Park, expressed high hopes that the annual event will now become a major source of friendship and understanding, not just between Hispanic cultures but between all cultures.

Josie Mendez, a liaison at Oveta Culp Hobby, said the event helps bilingual children in each school realize how many children like them are in the area.

We can improve the relationships between all of us, not just the bilingual community, she said.

Contact Don Bolding at dbolding@kdhnews.com

By Don Bolding

Killeen Daily Herald

An experiment paid off big for organizers of the Hispanic Heritage celebration in Killeen schools Saturday. More than 500 people attended a combined program in the morning and early afternoon at Clifton Park Elementary School.

In prior years, Hispanic celebrations have been staged in the autumn at the five campuses that have bilingual programs and bilingual parent liaisons. But this year, organizers decided to combine the separate celebrations into one district-wide event.

Parents set up tables with foods from their native lands, including Mexico, Puerto Rico, Panama, Ecuador and Venezuela.

We didnt realize all these people were here, said Puerto Rican native Idamari de Gracia, a parent liaison at Peebles Elementary School. Its mainly because of Fort Hood. They move here because of family connections and decide to stay.

Besides Clifton Park and Peebles, bilingual programs are included at Pershing Park, Oveta Culp Hobby and Harker Heights elementary schools.

A program in the auditorium included appearances by the 1st Cavalry Band, the Pershing Park Dancers, Folklore America Dancers, Jibaro Jam, and the Puerto Rico Folk Kids Dance Group. Business sponsors included Texas Motor Sports, H.E.B., Creative Cuts and La Horradurra restaurant in Copperas Cove.

De Gracia and Ada Martinez, a bilingual parents liaison at Clifton Park, expressed high hopes that the annual event will now become a major source of friendship and understanding, not just between Hispanic cultures but between all cultures.

Josie Mendez, a liaison at Oveta Culp Hobby, said the event helps bilingual children in each school realize how many children like them are in the area.

We can improve the relationships between all of us, not just the bilingual community, she said.

Contact Don Bolding at dbolding@kdhnews.com

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