Pan American Food Festival is coming back to Toronto! #foodfestival #toronto

The second annual Pan American Food Festival – the only festival in the world that celebrates the best food and culture of the Western Hemisphere – returns to Toronto from August 8 to 10, 2014. This year’s festival will be held at Daniels Spectrum, a vibrant new community hub in the heart of downtown Toronto, and will feature an impressive roster of extraordinary chefs, led by renowned chef and culinary genius Norman Van Aken.

As Toronto gears up to host the Pan Am Games in 2015, the public is gaining an appetite for all things Pan American. The exciting flavours and cultures of the 41 countries of North, South and Central America and the Caribbean will be showcased at the Pan American Food Festival.

As in its first year, the Festival will be entirely free to the public, presenting food demonstrations by international chefs, music and dance ensembles, kids’ activities, a Pan American vendors market, and a tourism showcase called Discovering Pan American Countries. Events will be held inside Daniels Spectrum and the neighbouring streets, Regent Park Boulevard and St. David’s Walk, creating a large outdoor area for visitors to discover the delicious and diverse cuisine of the region while enjoying its most-loved musical styles. This year’s Feature Country is Peru.

Read more: Pan American Food Festival is coming back to Toronto! #foodfestival #toronto

Protest in Brazil: Cheering for Argentina #americas #brazil

WITH a university degree and a flat in a smart neighbourhood of São Paulo, Ernesto Filho, a 33-year-old choreographer and dancer, is not your average Brazilian. He is, however, typical of the 1m people who took to the streets 12 months ago, in the greatest social unrest Brazil has seen in two decades.

The protests began on June 6th last year, with a small rally against a rise in São Paulo bus fares of 20 centavos (at the time, nine American cents). Over two weeks they morphed into a nationwide outpouring of dismay at shoddy public services, corruption, the cost of living, ineffectual government and much else. Since then politicians and pundits have been analysing the events, which unfolded as Brazil hosted the Confederations Cup, a warm-up tournament for the football World Cup that begins on June 12th—and trying to work out whether they should brace for a replay.

Read more: Protest in Brazil: Cheering for Argentina #americas #brazil

The Census Can't Fit Latinos Into A Race Box And It's Causing More Confusion

Pew revealed the findings of a study this month that shows some 2.5 million U.S. Latinos changed their race category from “some other race” to “white” between the 2000 and 2010 censuses.

The news prompted The New York Times and Slate to speculate that perhaps the United States isn’t headed toward a majority-minority status as many envision, given that, in the words of Slate, “a surprising number of Hispanics opted to identify themselves as ‘white’ in the last census.” Both articles say that the tendency toward identifying as white may mark an evolving pattern of assimilation into whiteness on the part of light-skinned Hispanics -- an idea disputed by Latino Rebels, who questioned the non-Hispanic authors' understanding of Latinidad.

The idea that Latinos will swell the ranks of the whites is an interesting theory, and perhaps even accurate, but the statistics released by Pew hardly support such a sweeping statement. What’s equally if not more likely is that the study reveals less about an evolving Latino identity or pattern of assimilation and more about the Census’s admittedly faulty system for classifying Hispanics.

Read more: The Census Can't Fit Latinos Into A Race Box And It's Causing More Confusion

The Selfless President Of Uruguay Is Opening His House To 100 Syrian Refugee Children

With the Syrian civil conflict still raging on, and conditions deteriorating in the war-torn country, it’s increasingly become the international community’s charge to help those displaced from their homes and forced to flee their lands.

With many neighbouring countries admitting scores of refugees, and other Western countries committing to allow certain immigration of Syrians, Uruguay has become the latest to open its doors to those impacted by the sectarian violence, with the announcement that the country would provide homes to 100 Syrian children recently made orphans.

But officials from Uruguay may not simply expediting the visa process and financially providing for the young refugees — instead, these victims and their families could find a safe place to stay is the very home of Uruguayan President Jose Mujica. Some reports list that Mujica is interested in setting up these refugees in his own summer house, described as “a mansion and riverfront estate surrounded by rolling pastures.”

Uruguay’s efforts are a “drop in the ocean,” but still very welcome and important in helping Syrians recover from this conflict, UN High Commission for Refugees official Michelle Alfaro said.

Read more: The Selfless President Of Uruguay Is Opening His House To 100 Syrian Refugee Children

One Hundred Love Sonnets: XVII #poem #pabloneruda

(Original Spanish)

No te amo como si fueras rosa de sal, topacio o flecha de chaveles que propagan el fuego: te amo como se aman ciertas cosas oscuras, secretamente, entre la sombra y el alma.

Te amo como la planta que no florece y lleva dentro de si, escondida, la luz de aquellas flores, y gracias a tu amor vive oscuro en mi cuerpo el apretado aroma que acendio de la tierra.

Te amo sin saber como, ni cuando, ni de donde, te amo directamente sin problemas ni orgullo: asi te amo porque no se amar de otra manera,

sino asi de este modo en que no soy ni eres, tan cerca que tu mano sobre mi pecho es mia, tan cerca que se cierran tus ojos con mi sueno.

Read more: One Hundred Love Sonnets: XVII #poem #pabloneruda

Cesar Chavez to be Honoured by National Parks Service

After years of careful study and consideration, the American National Park service completed a study into the dedication of National Park space to the memory of Latino and farm workers’ union leader Cesar Chavez.

Beginning in 2011, the study researched locations that had historic significance in the life of Chavez, finding five sites to be included in the network that would “tell the story of Cesar Chavez and the farm labor movement.”

As of the publication of the findings of the survey, the proposed sites include the following:  The Forty Acres National Historic Landmark and the  Filipino Community Hall in Delano, CA, Nuestra Señora Reina de la Paz, in Keene, CA, McDonnell Hall, in San Jose, CA, and The Santa Rita Center, Phoenix, AZ.

Read more: Cesar Chavez to be Honoured by National Parks Service

Pot Legalized In Uruguay

The Oriental Republic of Uruguay has been taking many steps, especially in the past year, to becoming a more socially progressive nation. From deciding to consider same-sex marriage to recently legalizing first-trimester abortions, the liberal democratic nation has been making efforts to grant more and more personal liberties to its citizens.

In a move that has put them ahead of the US and Canada for personal liberties, Uruguay is now on the verge of legalizing marijuana.

The nation has proposed a law that will give the state a monopoly over the growth and distribution of the drug.

Their reasoning? They say the war on drugs has been a failure, and that sentiment echoes a similar statement addressed by the Global Commission on Drug Policy in June of 2011.

Read more: Pot Legalized In Uruguay

La Ultima Fiesta Del Verano


El pasado31 de agosto Mercado News Magazine en conjunto con CityEvents celebraron en Spacco Restaurant “La Ultima Fiesta del Verano”. Al ritmo de la samba se fue desenvolviendo la noche.

La presencia de Garotinhas hizo temblar la pista de baile. Los aperitivos servidos hacían que se te hiciera agua la boca.

Una diversidad de personas asistieron al evento, entre ellos jóvenes  profesionales, Torontonians, y medios latinos. A medida que la fiesta se iba desenvolviendo entre tragos y risas, un invitado especial hizo acto de presencia.

Nada más y nada menos que Rocco Rossi, uno de los  postulantes para alcalde de  Toronto. Rossi estuvo   compartiendo con los  invitados durante  toda la velada. Además  de eso los asistentes fueron  sorprendidos con una  introducción de  bienvenida en español  que dejo boquiabiertos a  más de uno.

El discurso dado por el candidato para alcalde de Toronto fue totalmente conmovedor y alentador. Sin duda Rocco Rossi sembró a muchos un granito de esperanza para un mejor futuro.

Margarita Feliciano: Identity in Translation

Margarita Feliciano’s Influence

Nominated as one of the ten most influential Hispanic Canadians of 2008, Margarita Feliciano’s passion for language and literature has allowed her to use translation as a method of infusing Hispanic culture into Canada. “If we want to know what Spanish people write,” Feliciano explains, “we have to translate it.” By translating Spanish literary work, Feliciano has helped make a place for Hispanics in Toronto’s cultural mosaic; a place where Hispanics can celebrate their roots, their culture and their identity.

“When I came here it was mostly Italian and English,” Feliciano explains, “while in the US, the Spanish community was much larger and stronger.”

After moving to Canada from California, Feliciano identified the lack of Spanish resources available for the people in Toronto and has been a champion of Spanish culture ever since. “The good thing,” she states, “is when you put something in place that hadn’t been there before, it takes off right away.”

A poet, professor, critic and a literary translator, Feliciano has been supporting the Hispanic community since 1969. After completing her studies in Languages and Literature at Berkley University and the University of Florence, Feliciano brought her pen and passion to the literary world of Toronto. In addition to writing and publishing two multilingual books of her own poetry -  El Portal de la Sirena/The Mermaid’s Gateway and De Viajes y Rodajes/Break in Voyage - Feliciano has translated seven books and currently acts as the coordinator for the Certificate in Translations at Glendon College.

Adding to this already impressive resume, Feliciano has served as the Director of CCIE (Cultural Celebration of the Spanish Language - an organization that promotes the Spanish language, cinema, arts and culture in Canada) and is the founder of ANTARES, Canada’s first publishing house dedicated to the publication of literary works in Spanish. She is a founding member of the trilingual literary magazine INDIGO as well as a professor of Hispanic Studies and the coordinator of the Latin American & Caribbean Studies Program LACS and CERLAC (Centre for Research on Latin America & Caribbean Studies Program) at York University.

Feliciano clarifies that translation is more than just translating words: “It is translating people, places, thoughts and ideas. You cannot just translate something word for word but must delicately extract the ideas, the meanings, the truth of the message while still keeping the flow and magic alive in the language. Translation is an art in which you must thoughtfully choose words so that other people can think and feel on the same level.”

“The art of translation,” Feliciano continues, “may be compared to the transition of moving to a new country, in which you find yourself assimilating and yet you need to sustain the most important things within yourself to truly know who you are: your culture, your sense of self, your identity.”

Translating what it means to be a Hispanic in Canada, and a Hispanic Canadian herself -  a true lover of everything literature - words, wisdom and culture, Feliciano has brought the beauty of Spanish, the language and the culture alive.

While the Latin American identity is growing across Canada in places like London, Ontario, (Londombia) and Vancouver (LatinCouver), Toronto is the hotbed of Hispanic activity with 64, 855 Latin Americans in Toronto making up nearly 3% of the population.

“Still, Spanish needs to make itself a space,” Feliciano explains, “Currently, Spanish efforts in Canada have mostly been focused on things that have to do with Spain. And if it does not relate to Spain, they are less likely to go for it,” she said. Toronto has seen three waves of Latin American immigrants from Spain, Ecuador and Chile and each place in Latin America has its own unique culture which can benefit and enliven Toronto.

PATH by Margarita Feliciano

I have left this place that your prayer points towards,
the shining ring of time still flickering on my hand,
I have carved out a path that crosses the rock,
I move on slowly, I lean on my staff.
Upon the blank horizon I can make out the clouds,
Stretching out across the sky like soft velvet.
The sea lightning flashes it burning turquoise,
there are flying fish that rise up from the waters,
I continue on my path with my slow-moving step,
Vestiges and memories have all been left behind.
I have left behind forgotten my white wedding gown,
for the place so sublime that your prayer points towards



Margarita Feliciano: Identidad en Traduccio


Su influencia

Nominada como una de los diez Hispano-Canadienses mas determinantes de 2008, Margarita Feliciano ha utilizado su pasión para la lengua y literatura como base para usar la traducción para infundir  la cultura hispana en Canadá. “Si queremos saber lo que escriben los Hispanos,” explica Feliciano, “lo tenemos que traducir.” Al traducir literatura hispana, Feliciano ha ayudado forjar un puesto para los hispanos en el mosaico cultural de Toronto; un lugar donde hispanos pueden celebrar sus raíces, su cultura e identidad.

“Cuando yo llegué se escuchaba mas italiano e ingles,” explica Feliciano, “mientras que en los EEUU, la comunidad hispana era mas grande y fuerte.”

Al mudarse a Canadá desde California, Feliciano notó la falta de recursos en español disponibles para la gente de Toronto y desde entonces se ha establecido como una campeona de cultura hispana. “Lo bueno es,” dice Margarita, “que cuando uno crea algo que antes no existía, se va desarrollando en seguida.”Una poeta, profesora, crítica, y traductora literaria, Feliciano ha apoyando la comunidad hispana desde 1969. Al completar sus estudios en Lenguas y Literatura en la Universidad de Berkeley y la Universidad de Florencia, Feliciano trajo su lapicero y pasión al mundo literario de Toronto. Además de haber escrito y publicado dos libros multilingües de su poesía- El Portal de la Sirena y De Viajes y Rodajes - Feliciano ha traducido siete libros y ha sido nombrada como la coordinadora para el Certificado en Traducción de Glendon College.

Como si no fuera suficiente su asombroso curriculum, Feliciano ha servido como el Director de CCIE y es la fundadora de ANTARES, la primera publicadora Canadiense dedicada a la publicación de obras literarias en español. Es miembro fundador de la revista literaria trilingüe INDIGO además de ser profesora de Estudios Hispanos y la coordinadora de la facultad de estudios latinoamericanos y caribeños (LACS y CERLAC) en York University.

Feliciano manifiesta que la traducción es más que simplemente traducir palabras: “Es traducir gente, lugares, pensamientos e ideas. Uno no puede traducir algo palabra por palabra sino delicadamente extraer las ideas, el significado, la verdad del mensaje, manteniendo la fluidez y la magia del idioma. Traducción es un arte en la que uno debe escoger las palabras cuidadosamente para que los leyentes puedan pensar y sentir en el mismo nivel.”

“El arte de la traducción,” continúa Feliciano, “puede ser comparada con la transición de mudarse a un país nuevo, en el que te encuentras adaptándote y asimilando aunque necesitas mantener las cosas mas importantes dentro de ti mismo para realmente saber quien eres-es decir-tu cultura, tu ser, tu identidad.”

Traduciendo lo que significa ser un hispano en Canadá, siendo una Hispano-Canadiense ella misma-una amante de todo lo literario-palabras, sabiduría, y cultura, Feliciano ha traído la belleza del español, el idioma y la cultura.

Mientras que la identidad latinoamericana sigue creciendo a lo largo de Canadá, en lugares como London, Ontario (Londombia) y Vancouver (LatinCouver), Toronto sigue siendo la cuna de la actividad hispana con 64,855 latinos en Toronto, quienes representan el 3% de la población.

“El español todavía necesita hacerse su sitio,” explica Feliciano, “En este momento la mayoría del interés hispano es relacionado a España propiamente. Y si no tiene que ver con España, son mas renuentes a incorporarlo.” Toronto ha vista tres grandes ciclos de inmigración latinoamericana de España, Ecuador y Chile, aunque todos los países de Latinoamérica tienen su propia cultura que puede beneficiar y encender a Toronto.

“Yo creo que el español en Canadá va ser como fue en los Estados Unidos en los años cincuenta,” reflexiona Feliciano. Con la traducción como la herramienta clave para comunicar, Feliciano sigue definiendo lo que significa ser un hispano en Canadá, y continúa en su destreza con optimismo en cada paso.

PATH by Margarita Feliciano

I have left this place that your prayer points towards,
the shining ring of time still flickering on my hand,
I have carved out a path that crosses the rock,
I move on slowly, I lean on my staff.
Upon the blank horizon I can make out the clouds,
Stretching out across the sky like soft velvet.
The sea lightning flashes it burning turquoise,
there are flying fish that rise up from the waters,
I continue on my path with my slow-moving step,
Vestiges and memories have all been left behind.
I have left behind forgotten my white wedding gown,
for the place so sublime that your prayer points towards



10 Most Influential Hispanic Canadians 2009


The Hispanic Business Association (HBA) has announced 2009’s 10 Most Influential Hispanic Canadians. The awards, sponsored by Scotiabank, were presented at an event held Friday night that was attended by the Honourable Peter Kent, Canada’s Minister for the Americas. In recognition of all the nominees’ achievements, Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced a meeting with awards winners next spring in Ottawa.

“The Latin American community is one of the fastest growing cultural groups in Canada,” said Fabiola Sicard, Senior Manager, Hispanic Market, Multicultural Banking, Scotiabank. “At Scotiabank, we recognize the importance of supporting the communities where our customers live and work and we congratulate all of the winners and nominees for serving as exemplary role models for Hispanic Canadians today and for future generations.”

This year’s winners were chosen from 34 nominations coming from seven different provinces representing ten countries of origin. The winners were selected by a panel of judges comprised of past winners, executives from The Canadian Foundation for the Americas, Canadian Hispanic Congress and the Hispanic Press Association of Canada, as well as journalists from the Globe & Mail, Toronto Star, Canadian Business, and CBC. Media sponsors included Mercado News, Correo Canadiense, El Popular, La Guia de Toronto, Abanico, Latin Life, Latidos,, Una-C Canada,, Nuevo Mundo TV and TLN Television.

“Congratulation to all nominees and winners. They help us prove that Hispanics are a driving force behind Canada’s Creative Class and continue to make tremendous contributions to our new country. It is fitting to launch the HBA at this important event. 10,000 HBA directories containing the latest statistics about Hispanics in Canada will be available in both the GTA and Ottawa”, said ceremony organizer, Mauricio Ospina.




· Alberto Elmir (Ecuador):Media pioneer, founder of Ondas Hispanas

· Carlos Morillo (Colombia): Cardiology researcher and professor, McMaster University

· Eduardo Canel (Uruguay): Political science researcher and professor, York University

· Enrique Fernandez (Spain): Author and professor, University of Manitoba

· Hilario Duran (Cuba): Jazz prodigy, multiple-award-winning pianist and composer

· Ivar Mendez (Bolivia):Neurosurgery researcher, Dalhousie University

· Julio Torres-Recinos (El Salvador): Poet and professor, University of Saskatchewan

· Luis Carrillos (El Salvador): Community worker, Hispanic Development Council

· Marlinda Freire (Chile): Psychiatrist and professor, University of Toronto

· Sonia Rodriguez (Spain): Principal dancer with the National Ballet of Canada


Meet Miss Latina CANADA 2010



D A I N Y   M I N A - MISS LATINA OTTAWA · 2nd runner up

5ft 5ins Dainy is a true Cuban at heart. Born in Canada, Dainy speaks both English and Spanish and has experience in both modeling and pageants. Crowned the winner of Miss Latina Ottawa in May 2009, she is very dedicated to her commitments and represented the City of Ottawa at Miss Latina Canada 2010.  Dainy was the winner of the title of 2nd runner up and also won the Miss Photogenic Award.


J U D I T H   M A R T I N E Z - MISS LATINA QUEBEC · 3rd Runner up

5ft 6ins Judith was born in Guatemala and loves being surrounded by family and friends. She enjoys rollerblading, bicycling, going for walks, horseback riding and travelling. As the representative for Quebec City, Judith won the Miss Latina Quebec event in early June, 2009.  Judith speaks English, Spanish and French and holds a university degree in Social Sciences with a major in Political Science. She dedicates herself to others and has made it a personal goal to work for a humanitarian organization when she graduates.



5ft, 7in Yajaira is another contestant from Montreal who participated in the Miss Latina Quebec event. Together with Quebec titleholder Judith Martinez, Yajaria was sent to participate in the Miss Latina Canada National event. By unanimous votes, this Dominican Republic beauty is now the Latin Canadian Goodwill Ambassador for Canada. Yajaira loves to sing, dance, model and take photographs. She is a perfectionist who has a diploma in Esthetics and has also participated in numerous other pageants.


M E L I S S A   B U R G O S - C A B R E R A  - MISS LATINA YORK REGION · 4th Runner up

5ft 3ins Melissa, originally form Ecuador now lives in Toronto and represented York Region in the competition. Melissa has been previously involved in modeling and is an outgoing person who speaks both English and Spanish. Her hobbies include dancing, sports and listening to music.  Melissa also won the Miss Entrepreneur award at the Miss Latina Canada nationals for her outstan-ding contribution to the Fragile X Syndrome association of Canada; an organization established in order to help fund research for children and adults with Special Needs.


R O C I O   C H A L L E N  - MISS LATINA MONTREAL · 1st runner up

5ft 5in Rocio was born in Argentina and represented the city of Montreal.This talented Latin beauty speaks both English and Spa-nish and is well known as a singer of reggaton music in Montreal.  Rocio is a professional model who has been in the industry for the last 7 years, modeling, singing and making music videos.



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