Dunking Scandinavian cookies into a tiki goblet full of Basque sheep's milk while watching a troupe of Middle Eastern belly dancers from the coy privacy of an authentic Chinese fan just got a little easier.
Western Nevada Community College is bringing the world to Carson City this weekend for their 10th annual Multicultural Festival.
Music, food, dance, art and people from four continents will meld together in celebration of the divergent and growing depths of the area's ethnic diversity.
"We're ecstatic to celebrate the festival's 10th year anniversary," says exhibits coordinator Valerie Andersen.
"In 1996, we started with all the exhibitors and entertainers in a single room. Every year it's continued to expand to where it is today - three buildings, a courtyard and the outdoor venues."
"Our diversity is our strength," says Andersen. "The festival is a fun way to learn about different cultures and customs."
"It promotes information while building tolerance."
Festival-goers will have a chance to taste cultures from ancient Aztec to early American.
A raffle offers up such exotic prizes as an African ostrich feather, an Andean musical panpipe, skeins of hand-spun yarn, Hawaiian candles and Belgium chocolates.
Students from the WNCC Early Childhood Education class will give children an opportunity for hands-on learning through games, making corn husk dolls and crafts.
"Rock art, drop-spindling, Japanese calligraphy - there's a lot going on," says Andersen.
And if it all gets to be too much, WNCC nursing students will be offering free blood pressure checks. They'll also be teaching about heart disease and how it affects different cultures.
The festival will run from 11:30 am to 4 p.m. Saturday.
Admission is free.
n Contact reporter Peter Thompson at email@example.com or 881-1215.
10th annual Multicultural Festival
Where: Western Nevada Community College, 2201 W. College Parkway
When: 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday
Schedule of Events:
Sarah Winnemucca Hall, Aspen Building
• 11:35 a.m.-noon: Belly Dancers Troupe - Belly dancing from the Middle East
• 12:05-12:30 p.m.: Pony Express Dance Club - Country/western line dancing
• 12:30-12:55 p.m.: Danza Azteca - Traditional Aztec dancing
• 12:55-1:20 p.m.: Reno Taiko "Tsurunakai" - Japanese folk music with drums
• 1:25-1:50 p.m.: Carson Valley Chinese Cultural Dance - Chinese folk dancing
• 1:50-2:05 p.m.: Positive Energy - Little dancers from around the world/ancient acrobatics
• 2:05-2:30 p.m.: Panjadi Cultural & Sports Club - East Indian dancing
• 2:35-3 p.m.: International Folkloric Ballet - Regional Mexican dancing
• 3:00-3:25 p.m.: Pili Aloha Band - Tropical moves hula dancing with live music
• 3:30-4 p.m.: Sage Spirit Dancers of Fallon - American Indian dancing
Front Lawn, Bristlecone Building
• noon-1 p.m.: Chi Kwan tae kwon do
• 1-1:15 p.m. & 2:15-2:30 p.m.: The Sierra Highlanders