For a collective of community members and Ohio State students, dance is the key to cultural preservation. Álvaro Lozano and Maria Patiño are members of Folclor Hispano, a group at the Ohio State University dedicated to performing traditional dances from Spanish-Speaking countries. The organization highlights the uniqueness within Latin America by showcasing dances from Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Peru, and Spain.
Watching her child march in his school’s annual Halloween parade, Mayra Betances couldn’t help but wonder, “what happens to these costumes once Halloween ends?” Parents might store the festive clothes in the closet until the following year – by which time the child could outgrow it or fancy a different ensemble. Betances developed a plan to give new life to these garments. In 2009, she conceptualized Create Happy Moments, an organization dedicated to promoting cultural exchange between the United States and Dominican Republic through the donation of used Halloween costumes to children in the D.R.