Bicentennial Celebration of Peru in Tulsa


Although Peru’s Independence Day is July 28, Mita’s Foundation commemorated the country’s bicentennial year on July 23 at the Tulsa Press Club with a sampling of the best of Peruvian culture through visual displays, song and dance and food and drinks. 

The program began at 5:30 p.m. when Tina Peña, president of Mita’s Foundation, welcomed special guests, including Dr. Enrique Villar-Gambetta, the Consul of Peru in Oklahoma, who shared an overview of his country.

Local singer Tylisha Oliver-Thompson of Carmela Hill Entertainment sang the U.S. national anthem, followed by Peruvian superstar Renato Bonifaz who sang the Peru national anthem. He also gave an emotional performance of “Y Se Llama Peru”, a song about Peruvian ex-patriates around the world who love Peru. 

Several more VIPs attended the bicentennial celebration to read special messages from officials, including Marcia Thompson from the Office of the Secretary of State who read the Proclamation from the Governor of Oklahoma Kevin Stitt; Regina Goodwin, State Representative who read the Proclamation from the Mayor of Tulsa G.T. Bynum; and the Honorable Judge Lisa Deller who read the Proclamation from State Senator Michael Brooks-Jimenez

The Rev. James B. Graham III, president of the Clan Graham Society, also presented a special certificate as an act of international goodwill and cross-cultural friendships on behalf of the Scottish diaspora to Mita’s Foundation and the Consul congratulating the people of Peruvian heritage on this bicentennial year.

Miguel Tang, Director of the Green Economies Program of the non-profit organization Amazónicos por la Amazonia, who was visiting from Peru, gifted the Consul with an exquisite box of 50 pieces of wood from native trees found in the Amazonian jungle.

As for cultural cuisine, guests drank “pisco sour” and gave a toast to Peru after Chef Telly Garcia demonstrated how to make the national cocktail. He also prepared delicious samples of “bocaditos peruanos” (finger foods) for guests to taste, such as cebiche de pescado (fish marinated in citrus and spices), tartaleta con ají de gallina (tarts stuffed with spicy, savory chicken), causa limeña (a layered, lemony mix of spiced yellow potatoes, boiled eggs and black olives) and mousse de lúcuma (creamy native fruit dessert).

César y Amigos performed live with a mix of traditional tunes and modern music, like Santana Latin rock, for cumbia and salsa dancing.

Raffle prizes included a bottle of pisco, bags of Peruvian coffee, mantel (traditional textile from the Andes region), autographed photo of Renato Bonifaz and a basket of Inka Kola drink with logo cap. Proceeds help Mita’s Foundation fulfill the mission of providing charitable relief and improving the quality of life for the underprivileged and underserved children of Peru and their families. 

Happy Bicentennial, Peru!