Sterling Fiesta Celebrates Mexican Independence

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President of the Latin American Social Club, Frank Aguilar, was a bit down about the rain that halted the annual Sterling/Rock Falls Twin Cities Parade on Saturday, Sept. 13, but those who attended the organization’s evening dance in celebration of the independence of Mexico and to crown their new queen were in high spirits.

Father Jesus Dominguez gave a few words that helped those in attendance reflect on the rain, saying that we should think about the damage caused to our brothers and sisters in Texas who were enduring the brunt of Hurricane Ike. 

The group Sabor Latino had the dance floor packed early in the night.  After some dancing it was time to get to the annual traditions.  The night was a unique blend of cultures as members of the club presented the American flag as the music from national anthem was played.   People from all backgrounds stood around, right hands up to their hearts.  Afterwards a group of young women did a traditional marching of the Mexican flag to the tune of the country’s national anthem.  Again people from all backgrounds stood, right hands in the form of a salute to their hearts.

The Fiesta Queen candidates were asked to come to the front of the stage, where Nikki Rivera was crowned as the 2008 Fiesta Queen.  The 2008 Don and Doña also were asked to come up to the front.  This year Jack Hippen was honored by the Latin American Social Club as the “Don” and Angie Eilers took the Doña title.  President of the VFW Men’s Auxilary Rock Falls Post 5418 Jack Hippen is the a bashful man who has been a big contributor to the club and has literally done a lot for the LASC facility.

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“I did the cabinet there,” Hippen said as he told us prior to the ceremony inside the hall’s kitchen.  He’s even done work on the bar and has done some of the yard work for the place.  Hippen said that he was very much honored to be recognized by the LASC, “they are a good bunch.”

Angie Eilers was recognized for her community work including volunteering at for hospice and for advocating for people in nursing homes.  She is the Sterling Evening Lion’s Club Treasurer and has donated to the CGH Medical Center’s Tree of Life.

“It was long overdue,” LASC President Frank Aguilar said of their nominations. 
The high point of the night came when Father Dominguez proceeded to ring a bell which was place in front of the stage, and as it is done in Mexico he followed by the shouts of independence.
“Viva México! Viva los Estado Unidos! Viva Sterling!” Father Dominguez shouted.

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