The World Cultural Festival
The World Cultural Festival was a first-of-its-kind event for Wake Forest. Envisioned and created by the Office of Multicultural Affairs, this event was co-sponsored by SAF and the Center for International Studies. The World Cultural Festival brought together cultures from all over the world, so that the entire Wake Forest community could engage with these cultures on multiple levels.
During the World Cultural Festival there was something for each of the five senses: music and dance performances, food, information, games, and prizes. People had the chance to see, taste, touch, smell, hear, learn, and experience.
Free food was provided, and people could sample cuisine from around the world. Aramark provided themed stations representative from several different cultures, including Brazilian, East African, Indian and Thai food.
"Yard Games from Around the World"
We wanted to showcase different "yard games" that are played around the world, as well as provide information about the cultural origins of each of the games. The two games we chose to highlight were Kubb and Bocce Ball. Kubb is a relatively new game orginating in Sweden, played with a set of wooden blocks and sticks. Bocce Ball, dating as far back as 800 B.C., began in Egypt and was established in its modern form in Italy. Bocce Ball is played with several balls on a field or court. Groups played each other in these games throughout the festival, where volunteers walked them through both the history of each game as well as the modern-day rules of play.
We also featured a game of our creation called "Name that Country." We had a huge blank map of the world posted, and participants were given 15 countries and five minutes to label as many countries correctly as possible.
In order to make this a campus-wide event, we asked various student groups and academic departments to help. These groups set up tables and booths, and provided people with information about different cultures from around the world, and included interactive games, prizes, ways to get involved on campus and in the community with world engagement, and even showcased different cultural clothing. Student groups and academic departments featured were:
- Organization of Latin American Students (OLAS)
- Asian Student Interest Association (ASIA)
- Japanese Studies Dept.
- Amnesty International
- Interfaith Council
- African/Caribbean Student Association (AFRICASA)
- Center for International Studies
- Wake Forest International Student Association (WISA)
- Amani Children's Foundation
- Volunteer Service Corps.
We raffled off prizes representative of different cultures from around the world. In order to enter the raffle, participants had to visit at least six of the various tables set up around the event. Some prizes included a wooden Bali mask, Mancala and Parcheesi board games, and an African djembe drum.
As part of the World Cultural Festival, we had several groups perform. Two student groups from Wake Forest took to the stage - Apsara Indian Dance Troupe and the Organization of Latin American Students. There was also a Native American group of Lumbee dancers, from Greensboro, who did some traditional dancing. The event was headlined by DrumJungle, a nationally-renowned group who performs African and Latin American music.
We had a student photographer take pictures throughout the event, and we also gave Flip video cameras to several students to help us capture the essence of the festival. See what they came up with!