They’re troubadours from Costa Rica and they’ve arrived just in time to stoke Findlay’s holiday spirit. The band, Guayabo Blü, will play a free concert in The Cave on Wednesday, Nov. 18 at noon and at local downtown venues before leaving for home.
Chris Sippel, assistant dean for international, intercultural and service engagement, built a friendship with one of the band members over the past few years.
“Felipe Arce is a team leader that has been our UF Habitat’s host in Costa Rica for the past two years,” said Sippel. “He has been our guide and interpreter as well.”
Sippel noticed that Arce always had his guitar with him and talked often about his band. One thing led to another and Sippel invited the group to visit UF during International Education Week, Nov. 16-20, 2015. Other members of Guayabo Blü are Emil Morales and Mauricio Sanchez. (Sanchez is also a university professor.)
In addition to delighting Findlay with their blend of rock and blues, the three visitors are keeping busy interacting with UF students and members of the community. They’ve visited two Spanish classes, volunteered at Findlay’s Re-Store and will conduct a workshop on Spanish music and dance on Thursday, Nov. 19 at 7 p.m. in the AMU.
International Education Week celebrates the benefits of international education and exchange throughout the world. The joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education is part of a national effort to promote programs that prepare Americans for a global environment and attract future leaders from abroad to study, learn and exchange experiences in the United States.
“It’s been great having these guests from Costa Rica on campus,” added Sippel. “They’ve interacted with many students and their energy is boundless. It’s been a learning experience as well as a musical one.”