McKenna Powers, Staff Reporter

High school is full of rites of passage – your first day, getting your driver’s permit and license, joining a team or sport, first dates, graduating.  For Freshman Anika Marchan, however, a different celebration marked the occasion of growing up and maturing – a Quincenera.

“I guess you can say it’s like Confirmation. You go to mass first, and then you get to go to a party,” said Freshman Anika Marchan, describing her Quincenera.

Marchan has just celebrated her Quincenera, which is the celebration of a Hispanic girl’s 15th birthday.

She is now allowed to wear heels, makeup, and allowed to date. Although she never observed those rules at home, she is happy that it is now officially allowed.

“A Quinceanera changes a girl to a woman,” she said.

In a Quinceanera, a girl goes through the changing of the flats to heels (shoes). The girl walks into the party wearing flats,  and then in the beginning of the dance, there is a ceremony of “Changing of the Shoes” where the father will exchange the flats for heels. The changing of the shoes symbolizes a girl becoming a woman.

Marchan said, “You don’t notice a difference when changing. It just feels the same.”

For Machan’s Quinceanera, she had to choose a group of close friends to be her court, which would perform a group dance together. The court dances around Marchan and her partner in a circle. Marchan also had to dance with her father in front of the whole party.

Marchan said, “The dances were simple, and easy to learn.”

It was an overall great experience for Marchan and her friends and family.

“My favorite part of my Quincenera is that everyone had fun and truly enjoyed themselves,” she said.