A young dancer from Danza Azteca – A pre-Hispanic (Aztec) dance group from Mexico’s Global Village
Photo Courtesy Gary Layda

The 13th Annual Celebration of Cultures festival, to take place Saturday, Oct. 3 at Centennial Park, returns as the region’s largest and most authentic multi-cultural festival. The event is free and open to the public.

Named as a Southeast Tourism Society “Top 20 Event for Fall 2009,” the festival is presented by the Metropolitan Board of Parks and Recreation and Scarritt-Bennett Center.

Celebration of Cultures aims to celebrate and embrace the cultural diversity of our community by encouraging understanding, appreciation and respect of the cultures of the Greater Nashville community through a fun-filled day of music, dance, food, children’s activities, a marketplace, and an educational component called “The Global Village.”

More than 40 cultures will be represented, food vendors will offer a sampling of cuisine from around the world, and entertainment will be provided on five different stages throughout the park. A children’s area will feature free interactive music and dance programs, storytelling, a children’s stage, nature activities, puppet shows and hands-on art projects presented by local Nashville organizations. “The Global Village” offers a glimpse of daily life in countries such as Panama, India, Mexico, Bolivia, Somalia, Japan, Jamaica, China and Kurdistan.

New to the festival this year will be an area for teens called TEENS UNITED!. In partnership with Oasis Center, TEENS UNITED! is being organized by a group of local teens from 10 different countries, including Mexico, Ethiopia, Haiti and Sudan. Highlights of the teen area include a stage that will feature entertainment such as teen drummers, dancers, and puppet shows; traditional costumes for festival goers to try on and have their photos taken in; a world map where people can mark their country of origin; and more.

Last year, 28,000 people attended the festival, making it the largest one-day attendance number in the event’s history.


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