Mexican Fiesta

Wisconsin Hispanic Scholarship Foundation

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ABOUT THE WISCONSIN SCHOLARSHIP FOUNDATION

Founded in 1987 under the name of LULAC Council #9900. Renamed and incorporated as the Wisconsin Hispanic Scholarship Foundation, Inc. (WHSF) the same year to serve the Wisconsin Hispanic Community.

The goal of the Wisconsin Hispanic Scholarship Foundations, Inc. is to raise funds to provide scholarships for the higher education of Hispanic students in the state of Wisconsin and to help preserve Mexican and other Hispanic cultures by having a truly authentic festival, which is Mexican Fiesta. WHSF provides a cultural and educational environment to enhance and improve academic success of the Hispanic Community while promoting a better understanding of the arts, history, literature and perpetuation of Hispanic culture. W.H.S.F. assists in opening opportunities for advancement of the quality of life among Hispanics.

The Wisconsin Hispanic Scholarship Foundation, Inc. hosts different events during the year to raise fund for the scholarships, such as Taco Dinner, Beto Villarreal El Rey Golf Tournament, Mestizo Golf Tournament, Mexican Fiesta, and a participation at the Holiday Folk Fair. As well the foundation host community events: Dia de los Reyes Magos, Student Informational Forum, Tequila Tasting, Fiesta Walk and the Volunteer Appreciation Party.

It all started with a celebration!!

Mexican Fiesta original started in 1973 as a celebration of the Mexican Independence Day. A south side street in Milwaukee County was closed to traffic to celebrate the Mexican community. It was the first time that there was the excitement of a neighborhood street fair, a sense that it was time for this thriving community to show itself and others, the extraordinary beauty of a culture rich in diversity. The possibilities were endless! Music! Dance! Tradition! A colorful pageant was born, and now 42 years later a flourishing Mexican Fiesta has become a stunning tribute to the vitality of the Hispanic community.

In 1977 Mexican Fiesta accepted the invitation to move to Henry Maier Festival Park (Summerfest Grounds), making it 3 days of fun, food, music and culture for everyone to enjoy. It has now developed into Wisconsin's largest (paid entrance) Mexican festival.

Today Mexican Fiesta is a family-oriented festival, a showcase of our heritage. It is the showcase for the year-round work of the Wisconsin Hispanic Scholarship Foundation, Inc., the festival’s sponsor, to unify the community in a gigantic effort to award scholarships for young Hispanic men and women.

It is part of our ongoing effort to encourage our youth to pursue an education. With a volunteer force of nearly one thousand people, fifty coordinators, an active sixteen member Board of Directors, along with three full-time staff, Mexican Fiesta has more than hit its stride as one of Milwaukee’s most popular ethnic festivals.

Accompanying Mexican Fiesta on the road to success have been the many community-based, non-profit agencies that actively participate in the annual festival. It gives emphasis on the Mexican-American way of life, as well as displaying other Hispanic influences in our society. Our festival encourages individuals from all ethnic backgrounds to come share in the rich history, art, music and cuisine of our Mexican/Hispanic community. We try to help maintain this culture in the community and within our children.

After all, giving back is what it’s all about.

Mission:

Provide a cultural and educational environment to enhance and improve academic success of the Hispanic Community while promotion a better understanding of the arts, history, literature and perpetuation of the Hispanic culture. WHSF assist in opening opportunities for advancement of the quality of life among Hispanic. To date the Wisconsin Hispanic Scholarship Foundation, Inc., has provided more than one million seven hundred fifty thousand dollars ($1,750,000.00+) in scholarships awards to deserving young men and women, as well as assisting community nonprofit organizations.

Goals:

• Supporting young college students through programs and scholarships.

• Preservation and dissemination of cultural values and traditions in order to strengthen our Hispanic identity.

• Development of socioeconomic programs and services that benefit the Hispanic community and society in general.

• Training of community leaders.

• Improve the standard of living of Hispanics residing in the state of Wisconsin.

• Promotion of the arts and crafts Mexico and other Latin American countries.