National Hispanic Heritage Month

Hispanic family sitting around an outside table cooking

National Hispanic Heritage Month is observed from September 15 to October 15 annually in the United States. The month-long celebration commemorates the history, heritage, and achievements of Hispanic and Latino Americans and their ancestors who are from from Latin American countries, the Caribbean, and Spain. 

Festivals and educational events are held throughout the U.S. to celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month. Use our tips and ideas to learn about and celebrate the history and culture of Hispanic and Latino Americans:

  1. Attend celebrations being held in your communities. A few options in Washington include:
  2. Support a Hispanic-owned business in your neighborhood. 
  3. Try cooking Latin foods at home.
  4. Explore a virtual exhibition of Hispanic artifacts on the National Museum of American History’s website
  5. Learn about famous Hispanic artists like Frida Khalo, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Diego Rivera, and Pablo Picasso.
  6. Study individuals of Hispanic and Latino descent who have made significant contributions to American politics, like Sen. Octaviano Larrazolo, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, and Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor.
  7. Watch a YouTube documentary to learn more about the rich culture and history of the Hispanic people. One option is the The Latino List, which features 16 well-known figures from the Latino community in the U.S., each of whom discusses their family’s immigration story, the challenges they’ve faced on the road to success and more. 

Originally established as Hispanic Heritage Week in 1968, National Hispanic Heritage Month was expanded to a month and signed into law by President Ronald Reagan in 1988. It was first proclaimed by George H.W. Bush on September 14, 1989.

September 15 was chosen as the start date for National Hispanic Heritage Month because it’s the anniversary of the Cry of Dolores, which marked the beginning of the Mexican War of Independence. Mexico, many Central American countries, and Chile celebrate their independence on September 15, 16, and 18 respectively.

We recognize and honor the contributions Hispanic and Latino Americans are making within our communities. We proudly support our local Hispanic and Latino American communities by being an active member of the Metropolitan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, supporting CIELO's mission in Thurston County, and sponsoring the Latinos Unidos Culture Club at Franklin Pierce High School in Pierce County.

As we celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month, we acknowledge our TwinStar members and staff who are of Hispanic and Latino descent. We’re grateful for the impact you and your forebears have made on our lives.