They’re a part of the American West that doesn’t get a lot of attention, but maybe it’s high time they did. They were called the Buffalo Soldiers, and the Institute of Texan Cultures wants you to know about them.
“Buffalo Soldiers after the Civil War became very prevalent in West Texas as it led up into the Indian Wars.”
Greg Garret’s an Education Specialist with the Institute.
Fronteras: Tino Duran, publisher of San Antonio bilingual newspaper La Prensa, just went public with his Alzheimer’s diagnosis. Duran’s daughter Nina joins us on Fronteras to talk about her father and the family’s journey with Alzheimer’s. Imagine traveling the entire Rio Grande, just you, a canoe and some paddles. A couple of journalists are doing just that. We check in on the progress of the Disappearing Rio Grande Expedition.
The Texas Folklife Festival is coming this weekend and for those of you who have never been, festival Director Jo Ann Andera describes it like this: "It’s a coming together of communities to celebrate food, music and dance."
Forty of the cultures that make up Texas converge this weekend on the Institute of Texan Cultures to strut their cultural stuff. A big emphasis, as Andera notes, is food.
A new exhibit at the Institute of Texan Cultures captures San Antonians at their quirkiest. That exhibit is called Hats Off to Fiesta. I spoke to Diana Luis, who is a curatorial researcher at the ITC.
“Hats Off to Fiesta is pretty much a celebration of the different types of hats that individuals wear during Fiesta season" she explained. “Individuals show off their creative sides by adorning themselves with these amazing pieces of art on top of their heads.”
A new documentary called "Stolen Education" reveals a little-known South Texas story. It all started in the town of Driscoll. It was 1956 and a school there was doing something odd -- and illegal.
“They were placing children with Spanish surnames automatically into three years of first-grade track," explained Enrique Alemán, Executive Producer of the documentary. “They called it a beginner, low and high first grade. Parents found out about that and contacted Dr. Hector P. Garcia, founder of the American GI Forum.”
It comes around once a year, and when it does, San Antonio’s Asian population takes center stage. The 27th annual Asian Festival is all in one day, and it happens on Saturday from 10 a.m.-5p.m. at the Institute of Texan Cultures.
"There’ll be stages for music and dance, there’ll be food vendors with authentic specialties from China and Japan, India, Laos and Cambodia, so many wonderful food opportunities," said ITC Senior Communications Specialist James Benavides.
If you follow the Tower of the Americas to its base, and look just to its southeast you’ll see a huge square building of odd design. It’s the Institute of Texan Cultures. It’s one of downtown’s most distinctive buildings, yet many San Antonians have never been there. In case you’ve never been, maybe it’s time.
"There are all kinds of wonderful, hidden stories here at the Institute," said James Benavides, the ITC’s senior communications specialist, and his job is to make those stories less hidden.