By Jareliz Diaz

Photo: Jareliz Diaz

PURSA (Puerto Rican Student Association) and METAS (Mentoring, Educating, and Training for Academic Success) hosted Fiestas De La Calle San Sebastian Thursday, January 25th in the Puerto Rican/Latin American Cultural Center program room.

Fiestas De La Calle San Sebastian is a three-day celebration on the third week of January in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Paulina Maranges-Perez, a member of PRLACC spoke about what the festival is like.

Photo: Jareliz Diaz

“It’s basically one really huge party. Adults are there, and kids are there,” Perez said. “At night it gets a little more intense sort of like a Mardi Gras type of scene, but it’s definitely a really Latino Puerto Rico version of it.”

Perez talks about how the event is on campus.

“There’s so much food, people are eating, they’re talking, and they’re having a great time,” Perez said. “There’s music in the background, we’re going to talk about the history so everyone really knows what the holiday is about.”

Perez spoke about what she hopes student’s gain from this event.

“It could bring a lot of awareness, a lot of knowledge for everyone to really know not just Latino heritage, but what Puerto Rican history is all about,” Perez said “what people really celebrate and how it reflects us as a culture.”

Photo: Jareliz Diaz

Ana Usua, the event creator, spoke about the cultural meaning behind the festival. “Part of the festivities include a parade with big hats that recreate and represent illustrious people of Puerto Rico,” Usua said. “There’s also the gigante (giant) mask meant originally to scare others, as it represented the devil.”

Usua spoke about her point of view on the celebration at UConn, “I think it’s a great way to bring a little bit of our culture to UConn especially since there’s a lot of Puerto Rican at this university so it great to kind of bring that especially since the actual festival happened last weekend so we get to be apart of it even though we were away.”

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