Vamanos a Vegan!

August 2022


Chef Kate Ramos isn't a traditionalist. A Midwesterner who has traveled the country working as a chef in restaurants from New York to Los Angeles.


It was while working in Los Angeles Kate's love for traditional Mexican food and recipes developed.


She soon began to experiment with flavors and in her latest book, Plant Powered Mexican, Kate explores various uses of vegetables used in traditional Mexican cooking.


If you are tired of overcooked burgers, tasteless hots dogs, and guessing if the sausages are fully cooked at your summer gatherings, /you might want to try some of Kate's fresh and health recipes.

Recognizing the Music of Mariachi's thru the Mail

July 2022


The United States Postal Service has just released a new series of stamps honoring Mariachi, the Traditional Music of Mexico.


The U.S. Postal Service celebrated the sounds of mariachi, the traditional music of Mexico that has become widely popular in the United States, with a first-day-of-issue ceremony unveiling a pane of 20 Mariachi Forever stamps at the 30th Annual Mariachi Spectacular de Albuquerque.


News of the Mariachi stamps is being shared with the hashtag #MariachiStamps.


“The Postal Service is proud to unveil these new Mariachi stamps to celebrate the exuberant sounds of this music that is an integral part of Mexican American culture and has fans around the world,” said Peter Pastre, the Postal Service’s government relations and public policy vice president, who served as the stamp ceremony’s dedicating official.


“Today, the sound of mariachi is in the air, with singers infusing the music with tales of life and love and vibrant dancing as this celebration will continue with these 18 million postage stamps that are now on sale at Post Offices across America,” he said.


Other participants at the stamp ceremony were Monica Trujillo, the Mariachi Spectacular de Albuquerque’s educational and artistic conference director; Brian O’Connell, chief financial officer and chief operating officer of Atrisco Cos.; and Amelia Garcia, assistant principal of Ysleta High School in El Paso, Texas.


Rafael López designed the stamps and created the art. Derry Noyes served as art director.



Pepe Aguilar Revives A Legend

Posted August 23, 2018

Pepe Aguilar and his family, son Leonardo, and daughter Angela are reviving a family tradition – Jaripeos.


The musical equestrian performance was made famous by Aguilar’s father, Antonio, in movies and throughout his musical career touring throughout the U.S. and Mexico invigorating crowds with beautiful horses and the esthetic landscapes of Mexico captured in arenas where he performed.

For Angelinos, the Pico Rivera Sports Arena will no doubt raise memories of Antonio’s, and a young Pepe’s, performance of banda and Norteńo music while riding horses around the arena.


Now touring and promoting his Jaripeo Sin Fronteras, Pepe is reviving the tradition with an updated version of the Jaripeo.

Part traditional with familiar music and outfits, this new concept includes much more making it part circus adding surprise elements like guests, magnificent horse riding skills and characters to the mix.


Bold in its presentation, Jaripeos Sin Fronteras is an evolution of perception on traditional Mexican music in a modern-day forum. By bringing el rancho to major stadiums and forums across the country, Aguilar has revolutionized the concert experience.


Although the production is a major undertaking, Aguilar and his family make it familiar and personal. When asked by reporters what the most difficult aspect of creating the show was, Aguilar’s son noted “singing while bouncing on a horse. It’s really hard to keep your voice stable when riding – that’s when I learned to add lots of cushioning and standing to keep it steady.”


If you have never seen Antonio Aguilar perform in a Jaripeo, Jaripeo Sin Fronteras pays great tribute to this legend and will hopefully make this a new tradition Latinos across he country look forward to every year.

Catch the SoCal performance at the Honda Center on Saturday, September 1, 2018.


LE

The Roots of Baseball Run Deep in the Latino Community

by Tomas J. Benitez

Published on 10.24.17

The Los Angeles Dodgers are in the 2017 World Series; indeed, they are the favorite. Dodger euphoria is in full swing. Dodger paraphernalia is seen everywhere, from street corner vendors to television ads in English and Spanish.

Eloteros are wearing their blue L.A. hats as they hawk their wares; bank tellers, grocery store clerks, and restaurant workers are all wearing Dodger shirts in lieu of the usual attire. A trip down Olvera Street will find Dodger stuff mixed in with Day of the Dead, Pancho Villa and Frida images, often blended into one item, “Dia de los Doyers, with a flowered skull wearing a Dodger hat. Every night the local news stations feature aspects of the coming series; local newspapers are running their special Dodger editions, and social media? Forgetaboutit, it's Dodgers 24/7. Dodgermania.


Significantly, a large portion of the Dodger fan base is Mexicano, Mexican American, or Chicano, with a new generation of Latinex joining the swelling ranks of loyal fans. There are also the righteous holdouts, the ones who invoke the memory of Chavez Ravine, an ugly episode in local history that witnessed the evacuation of several Latino families from their old barrio. The Dodgers wear some of that stink, but the land was long before sold off from a failed federal housing project, and the city invoked eminent domain to make room for the then new Los Angeles Dodgers. Most of the homes had been sold and abandoned for years, but a few squatters held on until they were forcibly removed; we have all seen the famous photographs.

Yet before the hue and cry died down, the Dodgers were embraced by the majority of the local Latino community, which has now over fifty years later become the largest segment of the Dodger gate. How did that all happen?


To begin, the Mexican and Mexican American community has been playing baseball as long as the mainstream, both here and in Mexico. People often think of soccer as the Mexican sport of choice, and indeed it is, nowadays, but at the end of the 1800's soccer was a sport, played by the elites only, in countries with elitist classes like Argentina and Uruguay, and the masses were not welcome. Instead, they played a game on the streets that was very popular, first in Cuba, la pelota; later, beisbol. It was our game. When Mexicanos came in droves to the US during the Revolucion, they came here already playing baseball. And they were greeted by Mexican Americans left over from the war between the nations, who were living in barrios away from the crowd, but who played baseball in their streets and parks. As the Mexican American community developed, they played ball. They became more American, and in turn, particularly since the advent of Fernando Valenzuela, they made baseball more Latino.


Look at the 2017 World Series rosters, they are littered with Latinos from the entire diaspora, although my favorite, Adrian Gonzalez, will not be there due to injury. What Latinos learned is that they cannot compete with professional basketball players due to height, they cannot compete with professional football players due to size, but a guy who stands five feet five, Jose Altuve, is the best player on the field. It is not the size of dog in the fight, it is the size of the fight in the dog.


The Dodgers arrived at the perfect time, just as the city was rising anew, and just as the Mexican American community was arising to a new day, in numbers and presence. The game had all along thrived in the barrio, little leagues, factory teams, high schools, the army, pick-up games in the park. A couple of guys made it to the bigs, (did you know Ted Williams was a Mexican American? You can look it up). But not until 1981, with the arrival of El Torito, El Zurdo, El Indio, Fernando Valenzuela, did the game begin to change; “Latinize”. The gate has changed too as the Los Angeles Dodgers have become the local heroes; Los Doyers, with a loving nod to the heavy Spanish accent. So as Jaime Jarrin, the legendary radio announcer says, Vamanos Doyers! Play beisbol!

COMIDA DELIVERY - THE U.S. POSTAL SERVICE CELEBRATES LATIN CUISINE 

The United States Postal Service’s Forever® stamps series entitled Delicioso, celebrates the influence of Central and South American, Mexican, and Caribbean foods and flavors on American cuisine. Art Director John Parra and graphic designer Antonio Alcalá focused on the bright and playful illustrations of tamales, flan, sancocho, empanadas, chile relleno, and ceviche.. Each illustration was created by applying multiple layers of acrylic paint to textured boards, using sandpaper to reveal the hidden layers and give the designs a worn, vintage look. To learn more about Delicioso visit: USPS.com.

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