Campus to Celebrate Culture With New Diversity Festival

Nebraska Wesleyan will celebrate cultural diversity with its first Diversity Festival on Saturday, November 21.

The festival will celebrate a variety of cultures through workshops featuring Chinese lion dancing, Aztec folkloric dancing, Japanese drumming, origami making and henna tattooing. Participants can attend lectures on the history of various customs, learn native dances and music, and sample alluring foods from around the world.

The idea was first proposed by student Jarrett Thomas who hoped to find a way to further educate the campus and Lincoln community about cultural differences. Thomas shared his idea with the Multicultural Programs Office and together they developed a unique day-long event.

“This is a way for people to understand and become more educated on other groups,” said Candice Howell, Interim Assistant to the Provost for Student Success and Diversity. The event will encourage communication on cultural issues.

Events — which are open to the public — are planned from noon to 8:30 p.m. in the Weary Center. Faculty, staff and students can attend for free. Regular admission is $20 at the door. Advance tickets are $15 for adults, $7 for students, and $7 each for groups of seven or more people. Tickets can be picked up at the Center for Student Involvement. Sponsors for the event are the Multicultural Programs Office and Student Affairs Senate.

The event will conclude with a cultural dinner at 6 p.m. followed by performances by the workshop instructors representing six different cultures.

The following is a schedule of events:
12:15 p.m. — The art of origami making
1 p.m. — Lecture on Africa by Michael Opoku of Ashanti African Roots (Ghanaian drum and dance group)
1 p.m. — Art history of henna tattoos
2 p.m. — African drumming, Ashanti African Roots
2 p.m. — Asian dance, Lion Dance Troup
3 p.m. — Aztec folkloric dance, Sangre Azteca
4 p.m. — African dance, Ashanti African Roots
4 p.m. — Japanese drumming, Kokyo Taiko Drummers
5 p.m. — Bollywood (Indian) dance, Wendy Stegall
5 p.m. — Columbian folkloric dance, Kumbe Columbian Folklorico Dance Group
6 p.m. — Dinner
6:30 p.m. — Performances by all groups