“What are these !?!”
In mid-April, we returned to the WYCO Ethnic Festival, in style. (As President, I will take any and all opportunities to Cosplay -for culture of course! ). …..and I was asked this question a lot. I love hearing the fascinated but weary inflection in a person’s voice as they ask this question. It makes the hours of research and preparation for our events worth it – especially when my reply is received with growing smiles and widened eyes of intrigue.
The purpose of the festival is ‘to foster a climate of inclusiveness, promote relationships and contact between people, and educate each other about our common humanity‘ and this openness was very palpable. Hosted at the Kansas City Kansas Community College, there were many college students roaming about asking questions about the cultures represented. Many families were also present with parents encouraging their youth to learn more about each country and explore something new.
Upon visiting the booth, passerbys were able to learn about the Dragon Boat Festival ( June 18,2018) and common activities families share during this holiday; such as paper ZhongZi and origami paper boats. Lucky attendees were able to take home their own paper ZhongZi which were handmade on the spot either by themselves or by me (I started mini-workshops because those bobbles were in high demand ^^) Additionally, we shared some digital “freebies”including our Dragonboat Race -At Home e-packet and Chinese Name Worksheets.
It’s a beautiful thing it be in a room with dozens of other cultures represented, celebrating the uniqueness of each one as well as the commonality that we share. The combination of diversity and harmony was evident in the groups with all ages performing, the stages of life present in those visiting, and the smiles all around. Photos of the event may be found on Community Faces KC here: https://communityfaceskc.shootproof.com/gallery/6461776/home
A huge thank you to the volunteers that helped make this event happen. It was a joy to share some of the richness of Chinese culture to the citizens of Wyandotte County.