ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. --
National Hispanic Heritage Month is underway and the Robins library is celebrating and educating patrons about the contributions and influence of Hispanic and Latino Americans.
Upon entering the library, a book display highlights a variety of works either authored or featuring characters of Hispanic descent.
Festive cultural décor can be found throughout the room. There are book shelves donned with piñatas and Dahlias (the national flower of Mexico). While the front desk is draped with a Dia De Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) banner.
“This is a place for learning and we are going to share our knowledge about Hispanic heritage and hopefully that will encourage others to study on their own,” said Monica Jackson, library director. “I believe that every culture has certain gifts and traditions which make them special and help make our world a better place and that is certainly the case for members of the Hispanic community.”
People who trace their ancestry back to Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America and South America are of Hispanic heritage.
“Our heritage is diverse and we have depth. There is more to know about our culture than Cinco de Mayo.” said Daniella Delgado, a library patron. “Yes, we are proud of Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, but there is more to know about our heritage. Expand your mind with our amazing culture, books and, of course, great food.”
The married mother of three is a native of Trinidad and her husband is from Venezuela.
She said now more than ever Americans should look for opportunities to learn something new about different cultures.
“There’s a reason someone said variety is the spice of life,” said Delgado as she smiled.
The library will host a variety of events: a live virtual cooking segment featuring Latin American dishes, a give-away of culturally themed grab-and-go activity kits, and reading sessions featuring books from Hispanic and Latino authors.
Hispanic Heritage Month kicked off September 15 and continues through October 15.
The start date marks the anniversary of the five Latin American countries - Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua – that declared their independence from Spain in 1821.