Newark is an ideal place to spend Hispanic Heritage Month, which is observed annually from September 15th to October 15th. After all, Brick City has one of the largest Latinx populations in the state and a wealth of ways to commemorate the occasion. Read on for the top ways to celebrate Hispanic History Month and the contributions of people of Spanish, Caribbean, Mexican, Central and South American descent, in Newark.
Make your way to the Newark Public Library for its 2019 Latino Celebration, where you can explore the rich history of the Andes. Enjoy the art exhibition, Andean Culture Alive, curated by Nélida Silva and Yesenia López and an accompanying public program series that will celebrate Andean culture in New Jersey through food, music, and more.
Take your date night up a notch when you head to Mompou for dinner and live entertainment in their Flamenco Room. Not only will you experience authentic Spanish tapas like cod croquettes, stuffed dates, and chorizo, but also a Spanish art form consisting of singing, dancing, guitar and rhythmic clapping/snapping.
Newark Arts Festival
From October 10th through 13th, New Jersey’s Favorite Visual Arts Festival will host over 100 exhibits and happenings featuring art and artists from all over Latin America and the Caribbean. Events include a Latino Fashion Show which will explore the Latinx influence on mainstream fashion past and present, and Newark Latino Film Festival screenings.
Salsa, anyone? Each Thursday, Catas in the Ironbound hosts free salsa and bachata dance lessons, courtesy of NJ Salsa. Lessons are followed by an afterparty where you can show off your new skills and dance the night away to the Latin beat. For a $20 entrance fee, you can learn from one of the world’s best salsa dancers, Griselle Ponce, right here in Newark. Each Monday and Thursday at Latin Flavor Restaurant, both beginners and experienced dancers can sharpen their skills in a fun group environment.
Hispanic Heritage Month comes alive at the Newark Museum. First, peruse the Museum’s permanent collection of Latin American art including contemporary ceramics, household objects, clothing, and textiles. Next, head to the Planetarium to be transported to the jungles of Mexico and the city of Chichén Itzá through its featured program, Tales of the Mayan Skies. Narrated by Latin Grammy Award winner Lila Downs, the program presents the history, culture, and astronomical achievements of the ancient Maya. Finally, bring the whole family to CELEBRACIÓN, a Latinx Fusion Experience on Friday, October 4 featuring face painting, Latin jazz music, and an international food tasting.
Live Entertainment at NJPAC and Pru Center
On October 27th, GRAMMY-nominated rapper-songwriter and Latin music's "King of Trap," Bad Bunny, will light up the Prudential Center arena with hits like “Soy Peor”. Then on November 2nd, Mexican comedian Franco Escamilla makes his NJPAC debut with a brand new comedy show, Payaso (Clown), performed entirely in Spanish.
Sample a variety of traditional dishes with a twist at The Weekend Spot Restaurant, a family-owned restaurant serving Ricosoul cuisine. “Ricosoul” is a fusion of Soul Food and Puerto Rican homestyle cooking, so you’ll find everything from macaroni and cheese to maduros at The Weekend Spot.