Espanolandia 2017: New designs and booths bring in crowds

Manbir Ghuman , Photos and Web Editor

On March 21, the second day of Multicultural Week, MECHA held its annual Espanolandia festival in the gym, boasting new booth designs and drawing large crowds of students and teachers. This year’s Espanolandia gave Irvington students the opportunity to experience native cultures from around the world by participating in engaging activities.

The layout of Espanolandia was much cleaner and organized compared to the previous year’s; the fairground was covered by uniform blue backdrops and decorated with balloons, posters, and streamers. The design transformed the simple gym into a bona fide multicultural festival.

Students walked freely around the gym, practicing their spanish, playing fun activities, and exploring the cultures of several spanish-speaking countries such as Spain, Mexico, and Columbia.

“My experience was great,” senior Yousuf Rafique said. “I loved interacting with kids of different cultures and ethnicities, coming together and sharing one language that brings us together,”

One of the booths was Baile,  where people could dance to music and re-enact dances from Ritmo Latino. This booth, which has been a part of Espanolandia for over four years, gives students the opportunity to showcase their ritmo dances to other students at the event.

Alongside its activities, Espanolandia also had a restaurant that served authentic foods from around the world . The array of offered foods included  tacos, churros, and shaved ice which could be bought for 3-5 dollars.

Booths such as Carcel allowed spanish four and five students to contribute to the event while also having fun themselves. The iconic booth, which has been a part of Espanolandia since its conception, was an extended for the first time. Carcel added a mug shot area to their booth where the pictures of “jailed” students would be posted for others to see.

“In my booth Carcel, we’d jail people who spoke english,” said senior Humza Khan.  “It was fun and a tradition I was looking forward to from day one.” Espanolandia 2017 was smoothly organized overall, boasting a wide array of activities that combined cultural education with games.