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ELC Santa Barbara Santa Barbara Fiesta 2013 – ELC Santa Barbara August 12th, 2013

¡ Viva la Fiesta!

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July 31st through August 4th, 2013 were known as The Old Spanish Days here in Santa Barbara! Parades, markets, confetti filled eggs, dance performances, traditional and contemporary music fill the streets during this time. This is an annual celebration of the city’s preserved heritage from its Spanish founders and from the Spanish, Mexican and North American pioneers who first settled here and helped build the wonderful city of Santa Barbara. The first Fiesta, which means “festivity” or “celebration” in Spanish, was in 1924. Thousands of people fill the streets of downtown Santa Barbara in this unique forum for the cultural expression of our diversity.

At ELC however, the first annual Fiesta was this past Thursday on August 1st!

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The Fiesta was a great success! A total of almost 200 host families, students, teachers, and staff from ELC Los Angeles, the ELC Junior Program, and ELC Santa Barbara attended.

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Our mini donkey piñata decorations were a huge hit! Each guest took one home as a souvenir

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Christoph showing off his ‘leaning tower of donkeys!’

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The mariachi band’s instruments

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A unique ensemble consisting of two harpists and two guitarists

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Founder Ellyn Levine posing with the mariachi band

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ELC LA staff joined us for our Fiesta!  Dancing the night away to beautiful music

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Our caterers made delicious Mexican rice, beans, various salsas, as well as beef, chicken and pork tacos. Most people helped themselves to seconds because the food was so good!

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The Fiesta was scheduled from 4-7pm. Since everyone was having such a great time, the end time kept getting extended! Afterwards, many continued their Fiesta celebrations by going across the street to the Court House.  Here, they enjoyed more traditional Spanish and Mexican music, dancing and singing while sitting under the stars in the Sunken Gardens.

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On behalf of ELC, a big thank you to everyone who helped make Fiesta such a big success! Now, who’s excited for Fiesta number 2 next summer??