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Seminoles sponsor Nicaraguan cultural program

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HOLLYWOOD, Fla. – Building on its economic foothold in Nicaragua, where it operates a hotel for business travelers and a 6,000-acre cattle ranch, the Seminole Tribe of Florida has recently joined a cultural outreach program created by leaders of the Central American nation. The Seminoles will sponsor a series of performances by the Ballet Folklorico Nicaraguense in Washington, D.C.

Thanks to the support of the Seminole Tribe, “El Gueguense and Other Folk Dances of Nicaragua” will be performed at the National Museum of the American Indian of the Smithsonian Institution. Performances are slated for Oct. 21 and 22.

One performance is also slated for the Inter-American Development Bank Theatre Oct. 20, when the Ballet Folklorico will perform “Dance and Music of the Colonial Comedy El Gueguense,” which was designated a Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization.

In addition to the dance events, the cultural program also includes “A Visual Art Retrospective, An Exposition of Nicaraguan Paintings” at the Nicaraguan embassy in Washington, D.C. The works will be on display Oct. 19 – Nov. 2.

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The Seminoles have two major economic investments in Nicaragua. The 86-room, four-star Seminole Plaza Hotel in Managua has become popular with business travelers and local executives who enjoy its restaurant and meeting facilities. The tribe also owns and operates two hotels in Florida: the Seminole Hard Rock Hotels and Casinos in Tampa and Hollywood.

The second business venture in Nicaragua is cattle ranching, and it has produced an award winning-herd of more than 3,000 cattle on a 6,000-acre ranch on the outskirts of Managua that is also owned by the Seminoles. Under the direction of Calixto Garcia, the tribe imports embryos and semen from top U.S. cattle stock and uses them to improve its stock of prize Brahman cattle. The tribe, in turn, sells embryos, semen and live cattle to ranchers throughout Central and South America.

The Seminole Tribe’s cattle ranch captured top awards for its Brahman herds at the Central American Livestock Show, held every summer in Managua. The tribe’s success is comparable to its success with cattle in the United States. The Seminoles are among Florida’s top cattle producers, with more than 13,000 head on 40,000 acres.