Salina Almanzar

Salina Almanzar poses with some of her artwork. Almanzar is researching the Hispanic experience with Lancaster's art scene. (Photo courtesy of Salina Almanzar.)

Salina Almanzar grew up in the city’s southeast but went to Lancaster Mennonite High School, where her interest in art was encouraged.

Her work has been featured in shows locally and elsewhere.

But, she realized, “I was often like the only Latina making art and trying to show in galleries, that I know, of at least.”

And that struck her as odd given that Hispanics make up about 40 percent of the city’s population, according to U.S. Census data.

So as part of her thesis at Drexel University, Almanzar, 25, is asking how Lancaster’s art scene has or hasn’t incorporated its Hispanic community.

She’s pursuing her master’s in arts administration after getting an undergraduate degree from Franklin & Marshall College.

As part of her research, Almanzar’s hosting a dinner and discussion, on Tuesday. She hopes to get about 10 to 15 Latino residents between 18 and 35.

She’ll be asking them questions such as what kinds of artistic activities do they attend, what kind of activities do they wish they could attend and do they feel comfortable attending First Friday and Music Friday.

The event starts at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Fulton Theatre’s Education Building, 24 North Prince St. Almanzar will serve empanadas. (For more information, email Almanzar at salmanza@fandm.edu.)

Erica Millner, who owns Mio Studio on North Prince Street with her wife, Mai Muniz, said Almanzar has talked to them about her project.

“I think it’s really exciting that she’s researching this,” she said.

Aside from Mio, the city briefly had one other Hispanic gallery: Cosas Gallery, which opened around 2009 on West King Street.