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Fiestas Latinas events to be held at NMSU

Fiestas Latinas, a yearly series of events that provide an opportunity for New Mexico State University's Hispanic student organizations to share their culture and to ensure social interaction among different ethnic, racial and cultural groups, will present activities April 11-22 on the NMSU main campus.

Formerly known as "Chicano Week," Fiestas Latinas is funded by the Associated Students of New Mexico State University and organized by various student groups in the Hispanic Council of NMSU.

"We have been planning these events for several months," said Anna Lopez, president of the Hispanic Council of NMSU and a graduate student in the department of counseling and educational psychology. "I am happy to see that Fiestas Latinas has remained a tradition because I strongly believe that events like this enhance students' experience at NMSU."
Events for Fiestas Latinas include:

* Wednesday, April 11 - Juana Gutierrez, founder of the activist group Madres de Este Los Angeles (MELASI), will give a talk titled "Fighting for a Better Future" from 6 to 7 p.m. in the Corbett Center Auditorium. Gutierrez has been involved in issues including environmental racism, crime, unemployment and dangerous working conditions. This event is presented by Latinos for Exito.
* Thursday, April 12 - Mexican American Engineers and Scientists will present a comedy hour from 7 to 9:30 p.m. at the Corbett Center East Outdoor Stage. El Paso comedian Patrick Candelaria, winner of the Aguila Award Foundation 2006 award in comedy, will give his perspective on life and culture on the border and in the United States. This event is for mature audiences only.
* Saturday, April 14 - The Kappa Delta Chi Sorority will present a children's carnival from noon to 3 p.m. at NMSU's Preciado Park. The carnival will feature face painting, a sack race, a maraca-making activity, goody bags, prizes, refreshments and more. Parents or legal guardians must accompany children at all times and signed parental permission is required.
* Thursday, April 19 - The Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers will present a screening of "The Milagro Beanfield War" from 8 to 10:30 p.m. at the Corbett Center outdoor stage. The movie is based on the best-selling John Nichols novel of the same name and is rated "R." Free popcorn, soft drinks and other snacks will be provided.
* Saturday, April 21 - The College Assistance Migrant Program (CAMP) and L.U.C.H.A. de M.E.Ch.A. will present a co-ed soccer tournament and barbecue from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the NMSU Activity Center fields. Players must be current, full-time students of NMSU or Dona Ana Community College (DACC). Games will begin at 10 a.m. Registration is open to the first eight teams who complete and turn in their paperwork. Refreshments will be served at 11 a.m. To register a team, contact Jesus Avitia at (505) 646-4920 or jeal0000@nmsu.edu.
* Saturday, April 21 - The Association of Latino Professionals in Finance and Accounting will present a 5-K race traversing the NMSU campus from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. starting at the Frenger walkway south of Jett Hall near Espina Street. Runners must be current, full-time students of NMSU or DACC. Ipod MP3 players will be awarded to first-place male and female runners. Refreshments will be served to runners after the race. To register or for more information contact NMSU5Krace@gmail.com.
* Sunday, April 22 - The Omega Delta Phi fraternity will present a co-ed softball tournament starting at 9 a.m. at the NMSU Activity Center fields. Players must be current, full-time students of NMSU or DACC. Co-ed softball teams are required to have at least four female players per team. Trophies will be awarded to first-, second- and third-place teams. To register a team send an e-mail including the team captain's name, phone number and e-mail address, and a list of team members to odphi@nmsu.edu.

All events are free and open to the public. Active participation in some events is limited. For more information contact Laura Gutierrez Spencer, director of Chicano Programs at NMSU, at (505) 646-4205 or Lopez at (505) 544-5026 or anna_3329@yahoo.com.