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University of Iowa News Release

Feb. 17, 2004

Festival Celebrates UI Cultural Diversity Feb. 29

The Celebrating Cultural Diversity Festival, one of the University of Iowa's most popular events drawing thousands of visitors every year to the University Field House, will celebrate its 14th year from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 29.

This year's theme is "Voices of the World." More than 100 diverse cultures, both international and domestic, will be featured at the CCDF showcasing a variety of ethnic foods, arts and crafts, music, sports, fashion and other activities. Not only does the festival offer fun for adults and children, it also provides an opportunity to explore ways in which their own unique cultural backgrounds intersect with other cultures from around the world, bridging our global community.

Performers this year include: Ashanti, a Latin jazz band; The Beggarmen, a traditional and original Irish music group; Bahri Karacay & Turkana, a Turkish music band; Mirage, a Middle Eastern dance troupe; and Quad City Ballet Folklorico, a Latin dance group.

Admission is free, but vendors will charge for food, crafts and other sale items. Credit cards will not be accepted, but an ATM is being provided.

Parking for the event is available in Lots 6,13,14, Hospital Ramp IV and the ramp south of the Field House at 60 cents per hour. Free parking is available at the parking lot west of Kinnick Stadium (Lot 46). A shuttle service from Lot 46 to the Field House will be provided.

"Above all else, The University of Iowa is a marketplace of ideas," said UI President David Skorton. "The give-and-take of wide perspectives and varied worldviews provides the richest of learning environments. The essence of this marketplace, and our educational mission, is diversity in all dimensions. Every day, we at the UI undertake initiatives and activities that embrace and educate about diversity, and I am proud of them all. One of the most significant of these events is the Celebrating Cultural Diversity Festival, when we celebrate our many national origins with dignity and showcase our respective cultural contributions to the community with pride. Given today's world geo-political situation, the understanding that comes from celebrating cultural diversity has never been more important."

The festival is sponsored by the UI Celebrating Cultural Diversity Festival Committee. The UI offices and departments involved in the CCDF include: Opportunity at Iowa: Office of the Provost, Division of Recreational Services, Office of International Students and Scholars, Office of Student Life, Office of Admissions, Residence Services, University Life Services, IMU Marketing, Office of Public Health, UI Staff Council and Support Service Programs.

Student participation in the CCDF planning includes members from the following student communities: Black Student Union, International Cross-Roads Community Floor, and UI Student Government, in addition to many UI student volunteers.

The event's business sponsors are Qwest Communications, Wells Fargo bank and the Iowa City Press-Citizen.

For more information about the festival, see the CCDF website at:

This year's performance schedule is as follows:

- Turkish music, performed by Bahri Karacay & Turkana, Main Stage
- Dragon Dance, with Peter Chen, Main Deck to North Gym

12:15 p.m.
- International Fashion Show, North Gym

12:30 p.m.
- Middle Eastern dance, presented by Mirage, Main Stage
- "Chopstick Theater: The Cherry Tree," presented by the Asian American Coalition, Room 201
- Aikido, Japanese martial art demonstration, presented by U of I Aikikai, Room S 511
- Polynesian Dances from Hawaii, presented by Dana Csige, Room 462/472

1 p.m.
- Welcome from UI President David Skorton, Main Stage

1:15 p.m.
- Latin jazz music, performed by Ashanti, Main Stage
- Spanish Bingo, Room 201
- Traditional Philippine dances, presented by the Philippine American Association, North Gym

1:30 p.m.
- Traditional Vietnamese dances, presented by the Vietnamese Student Association, Room 462/472
- Cappoeira, demonstration of Brazilian art, Room 461
- Dojo-Shikendo, demonstration of Japanese Samurai arts, presented by Jade Tiger, Room 507

1:45 p.m.
- Stories from the Continent, presented by the African Student Association, Room E 220

2 p.m.
- Classical Indian dances, presented by Wendy Stegall- Kathak, North Gym
- Hapkido, demonstration of Korean martial art, presented by Iowa Hapkido Club, Room 511
- Peace Corps, informational meeting, Room 201
- Pinata, Main Deck
- Latin dance, presented by Quad Cities Ballet Folklorico, Main Stage

2:30 p.m.
- Traditional Irish music, presented by The Beggarmen, Main Stage
- Documentaries and Discussion from Africa, presented by the African Student Association, Room E 220
- Traditional Indian dances, presented by Noopor Dance Troupe, North Gym
- Traditional Chinese musical instrument performance, presented by the Chinese Student Association, Room 201
- Kum Do, demonstration of Japanese/Korean sword fencing, presented by the UI Kum Do Club, Room 461

3 p.m.
- Middle Eastern Dance, presented by Mirage, Main Stage
- Pinata, Main Deck

3:15 p.m.
- Indo-Western Dances, presented by the Indian Cultural Association, Room 462/472
- Dojo-Shikendo, demonstration of Japanese Samurai Arts, presented by Jade Tiger, North Gym

3:30 p.m.
- Mask making, presented by the International Crossroads Community, Room 201

3:45 p.m.
- Turkish music, performed by Bahri Karacay & Turkana, Main Stage

4:15 p.m.
- Latin jazz music, performed by Ashanti, Main Stage

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Service, 300 Plaza Centre One, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Tom Snee, 319-384-0010,