Festival Hispano Celebrates 20 Years in Sussex County - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Festival Hispano Celebrates 20 Years in Sussex County


MILLSBORO, Del.- Festival Hispano celebrated 20 years in Sussex County on Sunday as the state's Hispanic population continues to grow.

According to the last US Census Bureau, Delaware's Hispanic population nearly doubled within ten years. In 2010, the Hispanic population made up 8.2 percent of the state's population. In 2000, that percentage was only 4.8 percent.

The festival was filled with music, laughs and food. Festival Hispano has continued its tradition of celebrating Hispanic culture in Sussex County.

"It's to promote the arts and culture and cultural preservation that people who are moving here are able to continue their traditions once they're here," said Allison Burris Castellanos, the Treasurer for El Centro Cultural.

She says the festival has an important value within the Hispanic community in lower Delaware.

"It's marking a milestone in the Hispanic community," said Burris Castellanos. "The Hispanic community has been here in Delaware and lower Delaware for 20 years contributing to the economy, contributing to our community, and contributing in lots of different ways."

Maria Castellanos is one of those people. She moved to the United States from Mexico and remembers when the festival first started 20 years ago. She continues to come back every year with her family and has watched it grow.

"When we got here it was only a few Hispanic families," said her son, David Castellanos. "It wasn't a big exposure for us."

As the Hispanic community grew, so did the need to remember the culture. The festival was not just for the Hispanic community, but for all willing to indulge in the culture.

"It's very good music and such a diverse population," said Greg Fuller of Lincoln. "It's a fun time today."

"I love to see a diverse population," said Claire Snyder-Hall of Rehoboth. "It's great to have festivals to celebrate cultural heritage."

"I think it's very called for and you learn a lot of things just by being here and watching," said Beau Gooch of Milton.

And it's that exposure that some say is important.

"It brings people together," said Jeff Christopher of Greenwood. "Two different cultures together so we can understand each other a little better and when you do that you have community."

As the Hispanic community continues to flourish in Sussex County, this event plans to do the same.


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