The City of Holland, Herrick District Library, Grand Valley State University’s Meijer Campus in Holland (GVSU), Latin Americans United for Progress (LAUP) and St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church are working with Grand Valley State University’s Kutsche Office of Local History to launch “Nuestra Comunidad Hispana.”

This collaborative started as an initiative to share the stories of Hispanic Americans who came to Holland and have settled in the community.  The stories will be collected during National Hispanic Heritage Month during September 15 to October 15 whenthe  community will celebrate it rich Hispanic heritage.    Community stories will be collected at the Herrick District Library where participants will be photographed and have the opportunity to share their story.    Translators will be available for participants.  The community portraits will be shared in and archived at the Herrick District Library.

“Hispanic Americans have had a place in the Holland community dating back to the 1920s and their presence increased significantly after World War II. Their culture has added a richness to our collective lives that is worth documenting, preserving and celebrating,” says Mayor VandeVusse.   As the City, Herrick, LAUP, GVSU, and Saint Francis de Sales Catholic Church started to talk about how to launch this initiative it was apparent the project had a larger scope than anticipated.  “This became the perfect opportunity to draw on the expertise of my Brooks College of Interdisciplinary Studiescolleague, Melanie Shell-Weiss and the capabilities of the Kutsche Office of Local History,” says Lisa Miller, Director of the Meijer Campus in Holland.   The Kutsche Office of Local History will spearhead the project.  They have played an important role in helping people and communities preserve their history.   “As other cultural activities occur around Heritage Holidays or National Holidays it makes sense that we would honor the stories of our community throughout the year,” says Sara DeVries of the Herrick District Library.

Opportunities to share personal stories will be held at Herrick District Library.   For more information, contact Esther Fifelski at 616-355-1328 or e-mail or




Herrick District Library




Thursday, September 10

Saturday, September 12

Monday, September 21

Saturday, September 26


10 a.m. – Noon

2 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

3 p.m. - 5 p.m.

10 a.m. - Noon