Cultural Enrichment in Holyoke

Mrs. Caballero’s Spanish IV class enjoyed a field trip exploring local culture with our neighbors in Holyoke this spring. They began the day with lunch at El Rincon Boricua, a Puerto Rican restaurant, then attended a workshop at the Visitors Center on the mechanics of energy production in Holyoke in the late 19th century. Students also learned that Holyoke was the first planned industrial city in the country, and that with the help of immigrants from Ireland and Canada, it became a major hub for the paper and silk industries.

The class also visited the Volleyball Hall of Fame (the sport was invented in Holyoke), and they concluded their enrichment tour of the community with a visit to Mayor Alex Morse’s office. He gave students an overview of what his office has been doing to improve Holyoke, how he first ran for office, and how his Holyoke upbringing and Urban Studies major at Brown solidified his beliefs that he could make a difference in the political world. Students asked questions ranging from his opinion on charter and public schools to what he is doing to make the city a more competitive space to attract more businesses.

Thanks to Mrs. Caballero and to those in Holyoke who accommodated and educated our students!