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San Angelo kicks off Hispanic Heritage Month with a Diez y Seis de Septiembre celebration

The City of San Angelo kicked off Hispanic Heritage Month Thursday, the Deiz y Seis de Septiembre, on the steps of City Hall.

SAN ANGELO, Texas — San Angelo community members gathered outside City Hall Thursday morning to commemorate the kickoff of Hispanic Heritage Month and el Diez y Seis de Septiembre (Sept. 16 - Mexican Independence Day).

Live performances by singer Rita Capuchina and the Fort Concho Elementary School “Damitas y Charritos” honored the traditional representation of cultures.

El Diez y Seis de Septiembre is Mexican Independence Day, celebrating Mexico’s freedom from Spain in 1918. Hispanic Heritage Month started off as a week proclaimed by former President Lyndon B Johnson. Years later, former President Ronald Reagan expanded the bill to 30 days.

Vice President of San Angelo Hispanic Heritage museum Suzanna Valenzuela said, “The culture has been a little foreign and we haven't been taught as much as the past generations so really take the opportunity to learn more about it and embrace it.” 

San Angelo Mayor Brenda Gunter read the proclamation in which she honored the accomplishments and contributions Hispanics have made in the community. During the proclamation, Grunter advocated for others to learn about the history and culture. 

The theme for this year is “Esperanza: A celebration of Hispanic Heritage and Hope”.

“Be proud of every little piece of ethnicity that you have. Every piece that you have, whether you are a quarter Mexican or Hispanic, take pride in it,” Capuchina said. 

The celebration continues with:

  • "Pulgaso Fiestas Patrias", from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 16, at El Paseo de Santa Angela, 34 W. Avenue D
  • "16 de Septiembre Parade", at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 16, at 2525 Westview Drive in Abilene
  • "Southside Fiestas Patrias", from 5 p.m. to midnight, Saturday, Sept. 18, at El Paseo de Santa Angela, 34 W. Avenue D
  • "Southside Lions-El Grito 5K", 7 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 18, at El Paseo de Santa Angela, 34 W. Avenue D
  • "Family Fiestas Patrias" will be from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 24 and from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 25 at the San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts, 1 Love St.