National Hispanic Cultural Center

$15,000 grant paves the way for a year of programs for seniors at the National Hispanic Cultural Center

February 02, 2023

Stephen Hamway

Albuquerque, NM—The National Hispanic Cultural Center (NHCC) is thrilled to announce that it has received a $15,000 award from AARP New Mexico, which will fund a free multidisciplinary arts program for seniors, known as Siempre Creativo. 

“Through Siempre Creativo, the NHCC will be able to provide opportunities for seniors to connect with each other while expressing themselves and their cultural identity through various art forms in a supportive environment,” said Noël Bella Merriam, NHCC artistic director and co-interim executive director. “The NHCC is the perfect place for participating in creative aging programs that are culturally responsive and tailored to Albuquerque seniors. We’re so grateful to AARP and the NHCC Foundation for their generous support!” 

“These new programs would not have been possible without a strong partnership between the NHCC and its Foundation,” said NHCC Foundation President John Martinez. “Collaboration between Foundation and the NHCC is the bedrock of our work, and that partnership has resulted in a slate of new programs for New Mexico seniors to enjoy.” 

Under this new program, the NHCC will offer a series of free workshops throughout 2023 that blend wellness and social interaction with a variety of Hispanic art forms, from literary arts to dance classes. El Arte de la Palabra will open the world of creative writing for seniors through poetry and fiction readings and workshops with Hispanic authors and poets. As part of the program, the NHCC will welcome author Alicia Gaspar de Alba for a reading on March 23, followed by a workshop on March 25. 

Later in the spring, head to the Center for four weeks of traditional New Mexico music with dance classes such as La Marche. New Mexico Folk Dance begins on Thursday, May 4 at 1:30 p.m. and these two-hour classes run for four consecutive Thursdays. Once the weather heats up, don’t miss Summer Salsa and Tango for Seniors, which will provide four weeks of salsa and tango lessons beginning June 7. 

Later in the summer, Artes Creativas will celebrate New Mexico art traditions such as punched tin and provide opportunities to explore watercolor and printmaking through museum tours and hands-on art activities. Finally, Nuestra Herencia will provide participating seniors with the opportunity to participate in interactive tours of the NHCC Art Museum and Torreón, paired with genealogy workshops and coffee socials. These workshops will take place in the early fall. 

All events are free, and seniors can register for these workshops at 

More about the National Hispanic Cultural Center The National Hispanic Cultural Center is dedicated to the preservation, promotion, and advancement of Hispanic culture, arts, and humanities. The NHCC presents mission-related events throughout the year, some produced by its history, literary, performing, and visual arts programs, and others by partnering with external organizations. Events take place at its 20-plus-acre campus, which includes a plaza, an art museum, a historically designated building, a library, and a genealogy center. The NHCC is a division of the New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs and is further supported by the National Hispanic Cultural Center Foundation.   

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