Hablamos Espanol Expo celebrates Hispanic consumer Sept. 30

As part of National Hispanic Heritage Month, the Elgin Area Chamber of Commerce proudly celebrates Elgin’s Hispanic community on Saturday, Sept. 30, with its 13th annual Hablamos Español Expo from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at The Centre of Elgin’s Heritage Ballroom, 100 Symphony Way.

Hosted in partnership with the City of Elgin and Reflejos, the Hablamos Español Expo is an annual showcase of local business products and services with the intent of building the bridge with the Elgin area’s Hispanic consumers. This year’s event features over 25 local businesses and organizations, each with bilingual representatives at each expo vendor’s table.

Expo participants include Administer Justice, Centro de Informacion, CIBC US, Costco Wholesale, Elgin 311, Elgin Community College, Elgin Dental Associates, Elgin State Bank, Gail Borden Public Library, Homesmart Connect, Inlanta Home Mortgage, John B. Sanfilippo & Son, John Sutton — State Farm Agent, Latino Treatment Center, Marcus Elgin Cinema, Open Door, Pace Suburban Bus, Presence Saint Joseph Hospital, Reflejos Bilingual Newspaper, Elgin Area School District U-46, St. Augustine College, The Centre of Elgin, The Literacy Connection, Tri-State Carpet and Floor, and VNA Health Care with others to be announced.

To spice things up a bit this year, local restaurants will be competing head-to-head for your votes at the Hablamos Español Expo’s first-ever Salsa Tasting Challenge. Guests will be able to sample a variety of local salsas and their votes will determine the winner of Elgin’s most supreme salsa for 2017. Challengers include salsas from Chorizo Grill, 440 Washington St.; El Camaroncito Loco, 21 N. State St.; La Jaiba Loca, 7 Clock Tower Plaza; Nany Mexican Grill, 154 E. Chicago St.; Cilantro Grill, 512 Waverly Drive; and Taqueria Chapala, 901 N. Liberty St., with others to be announced.

In addition to the business expo, guests will enjoy a variety of Hispanic entertainment and activities. Kicking off the festivities at 10 a.m., the pageantry of Ballet Folklorico Girasol will wow guests with their colorful dance ensemble. Then at 10:30 a.m., Ballet Folklorico Huehuecoyotl’s folk music band will take the stage for some traditional Hispanic folk music. There will also be face painters, kids activities and a cartoon character photo booth for the kids.

As an added bonus, guests 21 and older who complete their Hablamos Español Expo passports by garnering seven stamps from expo vendors and completing the Salsa Tasting Challenge, will be entered into a drawing to win two box seat tickets for the Pitbull and Enrique Iglesias concert at Allstate Arena on Oct. 7 or the Ricardo Arjona concert at Allstate Arena on Oct. 8. The drawings will be held at 12:30 p.m. and winners must be present. Prize packages are courtesy of Reflejos Publications.

For more information about the 13th annual Hablamos Español Expo, visit www.ElginChamber.com.

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