2012 Guelaguetza Festival at CSUSM

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Contact: Margaret Lutz | mlutz@csusm.edu

The culture and traditions of Oaxaca, Mexico, will be celebrated at California State University San Marcos (CSUSM) during the 2012 Guelaguetza Festival, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, Sep. 30. This is the eleventh occasion that the Guelaguetza will be celebrated at CSUSM. The event is open to the public with an entry fee of $8. Children under ten may attend for free. Parking is complimentary in Lot C.

This family event is modeled after the yearly festival held in Oaxaca City each July during which members of the region’s 23 indigenous groups come together to share their distinctive music, dance, dress and food. A Zapotec word meaning “offering” or “reciprocity,” Guelaguetza traditionally was a ceremony and celebration held to pacify the gods in return for sufficient rain and a bountiful harvest. This ceremony also symbolizes the coming together and unity of Oaxacan communities both in Oaxaca and abroad.

The event, which attracts thousands of community members each year, is hosted by CSUSM and is sponsored by the Coalition of Indigenous Communities from Oaxaca (COCIO) in collaboration with the CSUSM’s Anthropology Department. COCIO is a community based organization in North County made up of Mixtec, Zapotec, Chinantec, Trique, Mixe and other indigenous Oaxacan communities who work collectively to support projects that benefit the Oaxacan community. The Anthropology Department at CSUSM specializes in collaborative research in partnership with local communities. The department has collaborated with the Oaxacan indigenous community for over 15 years in numerous research, cultural and social programs.  

Guelaguetza will include a cultural program featuring Oaxacan dance groups and musicians. Traditional foods such as Tlayudas (corn tortillas), baked goods, Oaxacan candy and arts and crafts will be available for purchase.  Proceeds go toward event expenses and community-based projects that aim to improve the health and well being of Oaxacan communities. 

For more information call (619) 251-0404 or (760) 622-1760 or online at www.cocio.org.

About California State University San Marcos
California State University San Marcos combines the ambiance of a mid-sized, personal, modern campus with the unequaled value of the California State University. Since its founding in 1989, the campus has distinguished itself. Students benefit from the latest facilities and equipment, a superb faculty that enjoys teaching, and a rigorous academic program that prepares students for a successful life in and out of the workplace. A recent survey reported that our annual spending in the region was $161 million, generating a total impact of $307 million on the regional economy. Eighty-five percent of CSUSM’s alumni stay in the region. CSU San Marcos is located on a 304-acre hillside overlooking the city of San Marcos. It is 15 miles east of the ocean; just 30 miles north of downtown San Diego.