‘Very proud’ Latina business owners reflect on Mexico’s Independence Day heritage.


Friday marks Mexico’s Independence Day. September 16, 1810 celebrates the cry of independence from Spain.

It reminds many of the spirit of freedom that helps maintain ties between Hispanics and their homeland here in the Coachella Valley.

A number of Latino-owned businesses can be found in the Valley. One of them includes Seiden-Juku, a martial arts program for people with special needs at La Quinta.

“I started when I was three. [years old] My dad was my inspiration,” said owner Sensei Tamara Canedo-Lifshutz. Karate has always been a big part of her life. Both her parents are from Mexico. And even though she was born and raised in the Coachella Valley, she’s proud of her heritage.

“For me, putting my name out there, putting my culture out there, being able to put the business out there is a great opportunity for young people to be proud of their culture.” As a Latina business owner, she can pass that knowledge on through what she loves to do.

“It’s been great because a lot of my family is Spanish-speaking, so it’s been an absolute blessing to be able to communicate with them and share the culture,” Canedo-Lifshutz said.

Every day she teaches karate to students from different backgrounds. During her journey as Sensei, she also created a non-profit organization. She found ways to bring her experiences back to Mexico. The first thing I wanted to do was partner with an orphanage in Mexico and we taught only individuals with special needs in Mexico for a year and it was amazing.

In Indio, Myrna Mendiola also shares a passion for working with children.

“You get to know them because they’re able to provide that safe space away from home, and they just make sure they know it’s going to be good,” Mendiola said.

As the owner of Little Fox Play Den Childcare, she says the business all started with being a mom. Mendiola said growing up Latina taught her how to value work ethic. “We are very much one. We are very encouraged. We met each other, that’s all for each other. yes. So it’s about teaching the kids to take care of everyone, not just themselves.”

Mendiola’s parents were born in Mexico. She tells me that seeing her struggles makes her appreciate her culture even more. “Knowing how our parents struggled. Our generation and other generations are trying to make it better. You know, to be better is to know where we came from.

By working in childcare, she can not only teach children the basics, but also pass on her heritage. “You know us and put something for them that the flag represents,” she explained, “so it was a great teaching skill, color skill and heritage magic.” So it was a lot in one and they loved it.

On Saturday, September 17th, the annual “Fiestas Patrias” will take place in Coachella.

The event runs from 3pm to 10pm at Coachella’s Rancho Las Flores Park and is free to the public.

Attendees will enjoy live music performances, the traditional Festas Patrias ceremony, a variety of cultural restaurants, an open beer garden, informational exhibits and children’s games. This event is an opportunity to celebrate Mexican culture and reach a large audience in a grass-roots style one-day event.

Our sister stations Telemundo 15 and La Poderosa are sponsoring the event.



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