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University of Iowa News Release

April 22, 2005

Gusto Latino April 29 Provides Latin Dance Fun, Raises Funds

The annual University of Iowa Latin dance festival, Gusto Latino, will provide fun for those who attend and funds for citizens of Xicotepec, Mexico. It's the second year the UI International Crossroads Community, International Programs and the Rotaract Club of Iowa City have teamed up to sponsor the event.

Gusto Latino will take place from 8 p.m. to midnight Friday, April 29, in the Second Floor Ballroom of the Iowa Memorial Union. The event will feature salsa lessons, a dance competition, prizes and the music of Orquesta de Jazz y Salsa Alto Maiz. The event is free for UI students with a valid student I.D. The cost is $4 for other students and $6 for non-students. Those who bring a children's book in Spanish or a toothbrush get $1 admission. All proceeds from the event go to the Rotaract outreach programs in Xicotepec, Mexico.

Orquesta de Jazz y Salsa Alto Maiz is a well-known band that "has a great Latin beat," says Buffy Quintero, IP outreach coordinator. "It's hard for anyone to just sit still when Alto Maiz takes the stage."

Salsa lessons will be taught during the first hour of the event with the dance competition starting right after.

"Gusto Latino will, without a doubt, be one of the most fun events on campus this year," says Madelon Boyer, an organizer for the event. "You will be able to dance, talk, eat and otherwise make merry. It will be a perfect kick-off to the fun and sun students, faculty, and staff have to look forward to just after finals."

Gusto Latino has been an annual event at the UI for almost two decades. This is the second year it ahs been affiliated with the Rotaract club of Iowa City, a community and international service organization open to anyone age 18 to 30 supported by Rotary International.

The International Crossroads Community, located in Hillcrest, is open to all students interested in international issues, foreign languages or who want to learn about different cultures. Membership is diverse, and in addition to the annual festival, the student organization sponsors several other cultural events throughout the year, including an International Open House, Oktoberfest and foreign film screenings.

ICC is affiliated with UI International Programs, which consists of a number of offices, centers, degree programs, academic programs, research projects and services. Organized under the associate provost and dean for International Programs, these units serve to further internationalize the campus and community and promote global scholarship, research and training.

For more information about Gusto Latino, contact Blythe Burkhardt, International Programs, at 319-335-1436 or blythe-burkhardt@uiowa.edu.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500

CONTACTS: Media: Lois Gray, 319-335-2026, lois-gray@uiowa.edu; Program: Blythe Burkhardt, International Programs, 319-335-1436, blythe-burkhardt@uiowa.edu; Writer: Diana Brace