Arcola, Ill. (WCIA)

Arcola High School is gearing up for an exciting celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, and this year’s event promises to be bigger and better than ever. In an exclusive interview, we caught up with key figures at the school who are at the helm of this year’s festivities.

Amber Behrends, Assistant Principal and Bilingual Director, shared that Arcola High School’s population is notably diverse, with roughly 50% of students identifying as Hispanic. This diversity has been further enriched by an influx of international students in recent years, setting Arcola apart from many rural communities.

Behrends expressed her commitment to promoting bilingualism and biliteracy in the district, believing that the language and culture of the Hispanic community play a vital role in enriching the local community.

This year’s celebration is set to be more than just an ordinary school event; it’s a community party. The event is scheduled for October 12th, running from 6-8 pm at the Arcola Community Center. The community is invited to join in the festivities.

The culinary offerings at the event promise to be a highlight, with several Hispanic families preparing traditional dishes. Notably, Hortensia Garza, the wife of Mayor Jesus Garza, is crafting delicious tamales. Local bakery Panadería Salvidar will contribute delectable desserts.

The celebration will be a vibrant blend of culture and fun. The Art Club will be offering face painting and crafts, while the popular game of Lotería will make an appearance. Mrs. Daniela Coombe’s Spanish students will present insights into Hispanic families within the school.

Moreover, students will dazzle the crowd by walking the red carpet in traditional Hispanic attire or presenting unique aspects of Hispanic culture. The event will feature presentations, delicious food, and engaging games, with door prizes for lucky attendees.

Arcola High School’s celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month is not just an event for the school; it’s a testament to the rich diversity that defines the community. Come join in the festivities on October 12th and be part of this vibrant, cultural celebration!