Gabriela Olmos, a Spanish instructor for the University of Alaska Anchorage and a local Spanish immersion school, is now an award winning author. Gabriela told Anchorage Good News, that she submitted her book for consideration to Latino Literacy Now, an organization that promotes literacy and accomplishment in the Latino community, and is being recognized in community oriented books. Her book “Eyes Closed”, coauthored with Shirley May Stanton, Director of Keys to Life, is inspired by their Eyes Closed Project a result of a series of interviews with 69 Anchorage children about their dreams of self, family, and community. Their “Eyes Closed Project” was in conjunction with the Keys of Life organization. Gabriela considers listening to the dreams of children to be valuable because of their spontaneous nature, and their longing to accomplish their dreams.
Being an American Citizen, is to be a part of the community of Anchorage. Today , there was a celebration, for new Americans, people who graduated from the Naturalization and Immigration process to become a US Citizen. At 12 o’clock noon, Families and members of Welcoming Anchorage Project Initiative collected to celebrate and welcome the newest Americans. The ceremony was at the Anchorage Assembly Chambers, ground floor of the Loussac Library, located on 36th Avenue and Denali.
Darrel Hess, with the Welcoming Anchorage Project Initiative, and Omsbudsman for City of Anchorage, “We’re building on the tradition welcoming nature of the Dena’ina Athabaskan, who have lived in the area for thousands of years.” says Darrel Hess, with the Welcoming Anchorage Project Initiative, and Omsbudsman for City of Anchorage.
If you, or anyone you know, is thinking of becoming a US Citizen, learn more at US Naturalization
I can tell you for sure, Liz Anaya is a very good dancer. I danced with her in a class, several years ago. That was before she married Cuban-born dancer, Ciro Anaya. Their company, Anaya Dance, located in Anchorage, holds classes in Anchorage and in Wasilla. They also host social dances with Latin music including, Salsa In The Park. The Town Square, downtown Anchorage, between Fifth and Sixth, at the Center for the Performing Arts, is the venue for this summer event. They work in cooperation with The Anchorage Downtown Partnership, whose goal is To support Anchorage events that allow people to enjoy the Town Square.. Liz DJs Latin music from 1 o’clock until 3 o’clock in the afternoon on Sundays, as long as the weather is good for dancing. It’s free and open to anybody who wants to listen to Latin Music, dance to Latin music, or simply watch people who like to dance to Latin music. I suggest you bring water. To learn more about them, go to Anaya Latin Dance
You know the Scottish Highland Games are close at hand, when the sound of bagpipes can be heard around the city. Anchorage Good News heard Ian white, Jim Bohannon, and Bob White, members of the Crow Creek Pipes & Drums bagpipe band, practicing around the Rosegarden at the Delaney park strip. Ian explained that the reason they were together, was to practice for a competition being held this Friday, the 28th, at the Loussac library starting at noon. The Trio event, is one of the events that will be kicking off the 38th annual Alaska Scottish Highland Games, that are being held in the Palmer fairgrounds on Saturday, June 29th. To learn more about all this weekend’s events go to Alaska Scottish Highland Games
Love one another, the idea for the day at the citywide Juneteenth celebration on the park strip. Many speakers of different races from the Anchorage community, encouraged attendees to love each other and celebrate the freedom that is alive in America, because of the courage of people, right now in particular the black African-American people, to make a stand for freedom and equality. The day’s emcee was Eddie P. Anchorage Mayor Ethan Berkowitz, and Alaska State Senator Elvi Gray Jackson were on hand. Anchorage residents lined up to sing, dance, and even show their beauty, to celebrate the value of the person.
Think of what a Special Olympian is. Enthusiastic and easy to love fellowship, between people playing sports. Just inside of the front door at Special Olympics facility in Mountain View, a big sign reads, “Changing the world is a contact sport”. Today, Special Olympics Alaska is celebrating 50 years of creating an environment where being special means, you’re included. Winning is a huge part of sports, but the Special Olympics oath of participating players reminds all that winning is a goal, but having fun is more important. Being accepted, encouraged, and supported is important and Special Olympics dedicated volunteers do a good job of providing that environment to people with disabilities.
The 2019 Summer Games are being held at Dimond High School, in the several gymnasiums. While checking out the basketball, powerlifting, swimming, and field and track, a young lady with a pretty pink sash and a tiara came in to Anchorage Good News view. Her name is Daiquiri Wright, and she is the 2019 Teen Alaska Miss Amazing. It is a title offered up two ladies with disabilities between the ages of 8 and 36. It is not a part of the Special Olympics program, but Daiquiri was there in her role as Miss Amazing, to provide community support for the Olympians. She herself is a special Olympian, but did not participate so that she happily fulfill her Amazing duties. Check out her interview on Anchorage Good News Facebook.
See the interview with Geoff Lundfeld, CEO of Alaska USA, and board member of Special Olympics Alaska, on this author’s LinkedIn page
Today was the day that the Anchorage Senior Activities Center, in conjunction with, Ninetta Regalado, a local resident who makes parties for seniors in Anchorage who feel isolated because they only speak Spanish. There were about two dozen Hispanic rooted peoples in the room. Mexico was predominant, but there was a woman from Peru, and another woman from Chile. As a way of introducing people to each other, they played a game to say you name, where they came from, what they like to do. When it came to answering the question of what people like to do, the most common thing was, to dance. It is the word, Bailar.
May is the international month of Mother’s Day, and was part of the reason for the gathering. To be able to celebrate a holiday with peoples of shared culture.
There were children dancers who came to entertain the group. They are called, Team Uatzi. Uatzi In Mexico, means “niños”. The moms of the group teach their children to appreciate the roots of the country that they came from prior to moving to the United States. Some of the children are first and second generation Americans, and they love learning about the culture of their family.
There are plans to do this again.
Do you have a senior citizen in your household that speaks only Spanish and feels isolated? The Anchorage Senior Activities Center has tentatively scheduled an opportunity for Spanish-speaking peoples to get together, on May 25th, 2 o’clock to 4 o’clock in the afternoon. It’s a potluck style get together, which means people can bring whatever they want to share. The reason this event is been selected for this month is because that in many Latin speaking nations, just like in America, Mother’s Day is celebrated in May. Honoring mothers is very important in Latin culture, and this event is great opportunity to get out and share stories about the love that these people experienced in their families. There is no transportation provided for this event. If you have any questions please call The Anchorage Senior Activities Center, at 770-2000.
Every time a plate of Cuban sandwiches was brought out to a table, people happily shared it with those around them. Today’s grand opening of the restaurant, Cuban Bred, is all about sharing good food, and being with family and friends. A Cuban style sandwich and “hamburger” made with ham, chorizo and other delicious ingredients, served with banana chips. Handmade desserts are available and unique sodas brought from Cuba. Cuban Bred is one of the 6 local chefs that have joined a program with Anchorage re:MADE, a local recycling hub. Not only do they beautifully remake donated items with volunteer, expert care, but with their newest class, Guest Chef, people’s lives can be remade to follow their dreams. For more information about their offerings, go to www.anchorageREMADE.com. Come meet the Brown family at Cuban Bred, open every Wednesday from 11 to 5, at the Gathering AK Café, 13500 Old Seward Hwy., south of Huffman.
If you’re interested in learning more about Japanese culture, or if you want to learn how to speak Japanese, today was the 16th annual Nihongo contest. The University of Alaska Anchorage was host to an exhibition of the cultural diversity of a “welcoming community”. The centerpiece for today’s event were scheduled competitions between students in the areas of skit presentation, songs, poetry, all presentations in Japanese. Some of the final trophies presented at the closing ceremonies, were gifts from the three sister cities to Anchorage.
If you’re interested in attending next year, Nihongo contest is held annually, at the end of March.
To learn more about Japanese language programs, check out the website for the Consular Office of Japan, http://www.anchorage.us.emb-japan.go.jp or find them on Facebook- JapanConsAk.