West Chester church to host event celebrating worldwide cultures

Children will participate in a Parade of the Nations as part of the Taste of the Nations event, which will be held on Saturday, Feb. 22 from noon to 3 p.m. at Endeavor Elementary School. CONTRIBUTED/EXPOSURE BEST PHOTOGRAPHY

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Children will participate in a Parade of the Nations as part of the Taste of the Nations event, which will be held on Saturday, Feb. 22 from noon to 3 p.m. at Endeavor Elementary School. CONTRIBUTED/EXPOSURE BEST PHOTOGRAPHY

Celebrate the world and its diverse cultures through food, dance, music and more during the 5th annual Taste of the Nations on Saturday, Feb. 22 from noon to 3 p.m. The event is hosted by Life Changers Church and it will be held at Endeavor Elementary School at 4400 Smith Road in West Chester.

“The Taste of the Nations was birthed out of the desire to celebrate the beauty of ethnic diversity from people and cultures from all over the world. We thought that it would be a good off set, in a time where our country, where groups of people were strained and racially polarized. Part of the vision for Life Changers Church is to reconcile all people together. So, we thought a better way to accomplish this is through hosting an event where we celebrate cultural ethnic diversity versus just tolerate it,” said Warren Curry, senior pastor of Life Changers Church.

While attending the free event, guests will be able to travel the world — all in one place. Attendees will be offered a guided tour through the nations, with an opportunity to taste food from around the world.

A few of the participating performers will include West Chester Academy Of Music And Dance: Bollywood Dance, Maasai Drum Group and Congolese Singers. Children will also have a chance to be a part of a Parade of the Nations, where flags from different countries are on display.

The event will include raffles and giveaways, a children’s zone, a photo booth and more. A variety of vendors will be selling crafts, jewelry, clothing, and other items. The countries represented vary each year. Previous countries have included Spain, Brazil, Ireland, Haiti, Nicaragua and Jamaica, among others. Taste of the Nations is free and the public is invited to attend.

“The whole point behind it is embracing differences, not looking at difference as bad, and not looking at difference with distance, but appreciating and valuing the differences, because that’s what makes us so unique,” said Tiffani Curry, director of missions, and Taste of the Nations project coordinator at Life Changers Church.

She said Endeavor Elementary School was selected specifically as the event location because it is so diverse. The event will be held in the cafeteria and gym areas at the school.

“Sometimes, if we take the time to educate ourselves, it also helps to lower the defense about the unknown, in taking time in a very safe place to ask questions,” Tiffani Curry said, “The other thing we found is some children aren’t exposed. They may be very limited as far as exposure to different cultures, depending on where they live, or their environment.”

Attendees will learn more about various countries and visit a number of stations, booths or areas. Guests will also have an opportunity to experience native dress or attire from many of the different counties.

“You may never travel outside of your state, let alone the country, but at Taste of the Nations, you are able to go to one place and find out or learn more about people from India, or the culture from Zambia Africa, or something from Greece or Italy. You may not travel to those places, but here’s a little snapshot,” Tiffani Curry said.

Many guests return each year, and newcomers continue to discover the festivities. Others may decide they would like to represent a particular country or share more about an aspect of the culture. Typically, about 350 guests attend the event, and a committee of 40 to 50 volunteers help to put it on.

“Where else can you see multiple countries in one place at the same time, and sample, and see, and learn. I think it’s a great opportunity for Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, Brownies, Daisies and others to really experience and see the diversity that exists,” Tiffani Curry said.


HOW TO GO

What: Taste of the Nations hosted by Life Changers Church

When: Saturday, Feb. 22, noon to 3 p.m.

Where: Endeavor Elementary School, 4400 Smith Road, West Chester

Cost: Free and open to the public. Vendors will have a variety of items for sale, such as T-shirts and jewelry.

More info: (513) 341-5543. Guests may register at www.eventbrite.com, but pre-registration is not required.

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