ASL is very culturally diverse, including 69 nationalities. In addition, there are 53 languages spoken at ASL. Every two years the ICC (International Community Committee), which is part of the PCA, holds the Global Festival in the Farmer Gym, the Blue Gym, the Commons, the Theater Foyer and the Theater. The Global Festival is held to represent ASL’s different nationalities while also representing the 74 total countries families at ASL come from.
This year’s Global Festival theme was Share Your Story. In the weeks leading up to the Global Festival, posters were put up around the halls of faculty and students sharing their story and background. The posters where put up to show the diversity of people’s stories.
To showcase the different nationalities, stands representing different countries were set up in the Farmer Gym and the Commons. The stands would hand out food from their home country to anyone willing to try it. The countries ranged from Brazil to Japan. The volunteers who were running the stands wore very colorful outfits representing their country.
A very popular stand was the USA stand. The stand handed out food such as mini sloppy joes, cookies, and mac n cheese. Many kids would come to enjoy their favorite American food and share it with their friends.
Another popular stand was the Brazil stand. The stand had food such as brigadiero and Pão de queijo. Brigadeiro is a common Brazilian delicacy consisting of milk, cocoa powder, butter, and chocolate sprinkles to cover the outside layer. This dessert is usually eaten on holidays and special occasions. Pão de queijo or Brazilian cheeseballs are a popular snack and breakfast food in Brazil.
Not only was there food at the Global Festival, there were many different performances that demonstrated an aspect of their country’s culture/traditions. One performance was Bollywood Dancing.
Bollywood Dancing was performed by a select few lower school and middle school students. The performance represented India and the act includes many facts about Indian weddings. The act taught the audience about what Indian weddings are like and what to do/not do when you come across an uncle or aunt who is Indian. The performance included many different ASL students and it really connected with the audience. Seventh grader Will Griggs played an American going to his first Indian wedding and seventh graders Ruhan Bhasin and Rishi Kurada taught him what to do.
To top it all off, the performance ended with an excellent showing of what dances happen at Indian weddings. The dances were led by the four seventh grade boys Bhasin, Griggs, Kurada and Ritesh Kapur. They danced to multiple different songs and had multiple routines, entertaining the audience.
The Global Festival was filled with activities, different performances, and very diverse food. It gave everyone at the event a great understanding of the different nationalities present at ASL.