Freshmen Awarded for Their Effort at Redwood City Salsa Festival

Lucas Wilder, Redwood City Special Events Coordinator with Yasmin Lambie-Simpson, Menlo College Dean of Student Affairs and President James J. Kelly

January 23, 2014:

One-hundred-fifty Menlo College freshmen were recognized at a City of Redwood City council meeting in January for encouraging community giving, and improving the community under the tutelage of Dr. Marilyn Thomas, Dean of Arts and Sciences.

The group of students coordinated the 6th Annual Salsa Festival, featuring a daylong showcase of Latin music, including salsa and jazz. The event drew an audience of 15,000 people in September. Amateur and professional salsa chefs competed for prizes at a salsa tasting and completion. The festival featured public tequila tasting, and hand-on art projects. The event encompassed eleven city blocks of downtown Redwood City.

“I loved the time I spent setting up at the festival,” said Sheila Garnace, a student who worked at the festival last year. “I met some friends I hadn’t known before, and the work experience was a great opportunity to learn the value of cooperation in leadership.” President Kelly added, "I am proud of our students for their embrace of community volunteerism and community service. The skills they've learned will be invaluable to them as future business leaders."

A proclamation awarded by Jeffrey Gee, Mayor, and received on behalf of the students by Dr. James J. Kelly, President of Menlo College and Yasmin Lambie-Simpson, Dean of Student Affairs and event co-organizer, reads that it would not have been possible for the city to successfully deliver this great public event without the support of the students who setup tents, tables, chairs, recycling containers, supervised children’s activities, sold concessions and salsa tasting kits, and provided clean up.