There was a visible international flavour to Cranbrook this past weekend as over 18 different nations and cultures were represented in the Multicultural Festival at Rotary Park.
The festival, in it’s second edition, grew from the inaugural event a year ago with roughly six additional cultures, as booths and vendors lined the park to showcase their unique traditions, heritage and culinary delicacies.
Cultural booths, performances and ethnic food made up the three elements to the multicultural festival, according to Coco Seitz, the president of the Cranbrook Multi-Cultural Society.
“A big shout out to all the cultural groups and also individuals who participated in the cultural displays because it takes a long time and effort to put together the cultural displays,” said Seitz.
Seitz added that the cultural dance performances and the construction of each booth were done by volunteers.
“The performances were amazing because we got a [Ktunaxa] drum group from Creston to travel here,” said Seitz. “I invited a Chinese lady who traveled here from Vancouver and did a Chinese folk dance,” she said.
“We had the Huncar Warriors Academy perform the martial arts, that was quite interesting. We also had two girls from the Indian community perform an Indian dance.”
Cultures included: Canadian; Japanese, Indian; German; Ktunaxa; Korean; Italian; Irish; Metis; Croatian; French Canadian; Chinese; Thai; Filipino and South African.
International students from the College of the Rockies were also on hand as part of the event.
Roughly 3,000 people turned out to the event, which was MC’d by Bruce Seitz and was supported through grant funding by the Columbia Basin Trust.
Cranbrook Multi-cultural Society is a not-for-profit society who promotes multi-cultural awareness and mutual respect through celebrating our diversity in the community.
The Society board includes Seitz, Crystal Green, and directors Wayne Stetski, Anna Scavo and Albert Servando.