Salsa Night: Bringing out culture, dance moves

 

IMG_0059

Blacksburg, Va., Oct. 18–Sycamore Deli: Students file in for Salsa Night. The event attracts people of all cultures and ethnicities. Photo: Nathan Loprete

Virginia Tech is a school that consists of a variety of cultures and there is never a better time to learn about other cultures than when you’re in college. One of the opportunities to do so is on Wednesday night at Sycamore Deli who also hosts a variety of events throughout the school year. Located in downtown Blacksburg, Sycamore Deli turns down the lights and turns up the music for Salsa Night.

Those that don’t know how to dance can come early and get lessons from a group called Salsa Tech. Sebastian Andrade, who helps lead Salsa Tech talked about the importance of being familiar with different cultures and what Salsa Tech.

“The main mission for Salsa Tech is to promote the Latin-American culture. We want to take it out there for people to have it,” he said. Andrade also noted the importance of sharing the history behind dancing and festive celebrations with those that may not be familiar with it.

The idea of bringing together different cultures has even been visible from Virginia Tech. In 2015 Virginia Tech announced a new commitment to increasing diversity and bringing in more student from different backgrounds.

This idea of creating awareness about different cultures goes hand-in-hand with the local businesses who need more business during the week. Shift manager Michelle Berry thinks Salsa Night has been a hit for the past few years.

“I’ve been working Salsa Night for three and half years now. You see people that come their first time and don’t know anything and now they’re on the stage dancing,” she said.

Salsa Night shows no sign of slowing down especially as the student population continues to grow. For Andrade, his love of salsa dancing is in his veins and comes from his family.