International Club Puts On Culture Fair

International+Club+Puts+On+Culture+Fair

A great amount of diversity was situated in the auxiliary gym during the school day on Friday. The first ever Culture Fair, hosted by the International Club, featured dozens of tables representing dozens of countries from France to Tazmania to even the Philippines.

Alex Munge, a senior foreign exchange student from Sweden, helped out at the table for Sweden. The booth included numerous Swedish cultural objects such as a bock (a traditional Christmas decoration) and a Dala horse. In addition, a J-26 model plane was on display along with a book about Stockholm, the country’s capital, and a map that shows Swedish territories when settlers came to the United States.

“There are some Scandinavian folk dancers next to me, and they have some Scandinavian things – stuff from Norway, Denmark, and Finland. Most of the stuff is Swedish, though, and we have a presentation about Sweden,” Munge said.

The idea for the culture fair sprouted at the beginning of the school year, around the time that the International Club started.

“At first it was sort of wobbly whether or not we would have it. But it ended up that we just thought of it and it came,” Jacob Thomas, sophomore and International Club president said.

After following through with the idea, the main focus was getting people to volunteer to perform at the fair. This included numerous groups of dancers that performed in the middle of the gym. While many students focused their attention on the core of the action at these performers, students and volunteers ran tables on the outskirts of the gym to teach attendees about their root countries.

“The thing that really shocked me was all of these different stations and countries. It was really amazing,” Munge said.

Some students that were part of the Culture Fair brought relatives or family friends to be apart of explaining the traditions of their country. Many sang songs and brought traditional clothing that they have or is worn.

Along with Munge, Sheena Sariah, freshman, ran a table for her home country: India.

“People come up and ask questions and I tell them about my country. And I’ve also been giving out henna tattoos, writing their name in Hindi,” Sariah said.

Sariah moved to the United States from India before the 6th grade. She enjoyed the overall variety that the fair offered.

“You get to go around and experience all of the different types of cultures. For example, the Mexican booth had Mexican pop and the French booth had croissants. It was just so cool,” Sariah said.

Axel Maldonado, senior, helped run a French art gallery in one corner of the gym, while in another, students battled each other in ping-pong and checked out different Korean pop CDs. No matter where the attention was situated, those who put together and ran the event were very happy with the overall turnout.

“I like how there are so many people coming in and that are very interested, and I’m just so happy that I get to share information about my home country,” Munge said.

Alex Red Corn, social studies teacher,  helped oversee the event with assistance from Thomas.

“I think it [the Culture Fair] went really well; there was a lot of excitement” said Red Corn.

Thomas really found the fair to be a good learning experience for the students who attended.

“It gets people to understand more about culture. Some people just think culture’s not much, but you can really teach them a lot with this,” Thomas said.