Feliz Navidad! It's a Hispanic Celebration in Region 8

December 14, 2003 -- Posted at 9:07 p.m. CST

JONESBORO--Food, fun and some family tradition...it's all you really need to celebrate the holidays...oh, and maybe a visit from a bilingual Santa Claus, saying "F

elize Navidad!"

Hispanic families were out celebrating the Children's Christmas Festival at the Earl Bell Community Center in Jonesboro.

Shantel Ruiz said she really enjoyed coming to the Festival.
"I get to eat, I get to have a present, cotton candy, rock climbing and I get to play with my friends and stuff."

Event organizers say this is something special for the Hispanic Community.

Benjamin Sanchez worked many hours on the Festival, and is pleased with the event.
"We want to adapt to this culture here, but we want to keep our traditions, also. We (the Hispanic Community) want to remember what Christmas is all about.

Kids and adults were able to enjoy live music, some fantastic tamales, face painting, toys from Santa and even....rock climbing?

For some it was the first time on a rock wall. And though rock climbing may not have a lot to do with the Hispanic Christmas culture...it sure is fun for the kids.

Oscar Sanchez was swinging from a rope high on the wall, all because of a challenge.
He said "I was trying to get up there because my little brother was telling me that i couldn't."

Whether you celebrate your holiday with a Christmas Tree, Dredel or even a pinata...it all boils down to just one thing...

"We want to share our culture, we want people to learn what we are all about...were pretty much the same, but we have some differences, but we all celebrate Christmas and we all like to have fun," said Sanchez.