‘La Posada’ at St. Elizabeth Center Dec. 9

It has often been said that “the greatest story every told” is the night of Jesus’ birth. It has been told in many different countries, in various languages.

The “La Posada” is the Hispanic version of the procession and the story of Mary, Joseph and the birth of Jesus as told through the “Hymnos de las Posadas.” The “Hymnos de las Posadas” has three components: an on-stage choir sings the portion designated “outside,” the audience sings the portions designated “inside” and the actors re-enact the story during the singing.

From 3 to 6 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 9, the Hispanic Gallery of the Ethnic Heritage Museum will host the Fourth Annual “La Posada” celebration at the St. Elizabeth Center, 1536 S. Main St. In the spirit of the holiday tradition, this event is free to the public.

The Fourth Annual “La Posada” program will include traditional Hispanic holiday music performed by Tito Cevallos and the Cardenas Brother Band. Students from East High School and Belvidere High School will perform several authentic Spanish dances with performances from Kandy Flores, Lugio Murillo and Elias Soria. No program would be complete without the bursting of piñatas by children from the audience.

The center will be decorated in the Hispanic holiday tradition, and representatives from various Spanish-speaking countries will set up booths, which enabled visitors to discover how these cultures celebrated Christmas in their countries.

A number of vendors will donate traditional Hispanic holiday treats for the visitors to sample. These treats will include fruits, nuts, cookies and candies. All of these items will be free for sampling, and the children will be able to take home bags of holiday treats.

In October 2005, the Illinois Association of Museums awarded the Ethnic Heritage Museum the “Award of Excellence” for the “La Posada” at its annual conference in St. Charles, Ill. They saw it as both a wonderful way to preserve a traditional Hispanic event and an excellent way to educate the non-Hispanic population in our area.

So gather the family and join the Ethnic Heritage Museum in the celebration. The “La Posada” is becoming one of Rockford’s crowning jewels for the holiday season.

From the Dec. 6 – Dec. 12, 2006, issue

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