News Column

Hispanic Heritage Organizers Hope to Set Salsa Record

Aug. 2, 2013

Local Latinos are hoping to launch Hispanic Heritage Month, which begins in mid-September, in record-breaking style.

At a press conference Thursday at The Abraham Lincoln hotel, organizers announced special plans for the Berks Salsa Fest for the Arts.

It will be held on Sept. 15, the first day of Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs to Oct. 15.

The event will be put on by the I-LEAD Charter School, Berks Salsa Fest and RIZE, a local youth organization that fosters the arts for nonviolence awareness.

Angel Figueroa, co-founder of I-LEAD and event organizer, said there will be an attempt to set a world record that day for salsa dancing.

"Our goal is to have over 2,000 people salsa for at least two minutes," he said.

The attempt to set a mark recognized by Guinness World Records will be on North Fifth Street between Walnut and Washington streets.

The current record is 1,686 dancers, achieved at Carnaval Coatzacoalcos 2012, in Coatzacoalcos, Veracruz, Mexico, on March 24, 2012, according to Guinness.

"I am more than happy to see this happen," said Wanda Holdren, founder of Berks Salsa Fest. "This is one of my dreams come true."

Figueroa made a point to mention that people don't have to know how to dance to participate and that Holdren will give a brief tutorial before people attempt to break the record.

"This event will put Reading on the global map," Figueroa said. "And, it will also draw thousands of people to downtown Fifth Street."

Mayor Vaughn D. Spencer, who also attended the news conference, said he is happy to be mayor of a city that is attempting to be a trendsetter and record-breaker.

Source: (c)2013 the Reading Eagle (Reading, Pa.). Distributed by MCT Information Services.

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