Festival of Cultures kicks off this Saturday

The 3rd Annual International Festival of Cultures will kick off this Saturday, Sept. 9, at the Garapan Fishing Base to showcase the islands’ many cultures every Saturday of September.

The festival was started on Saipan over two years ago.

According to Marianas Visitors Authority project coordinator Lin Sablan, the event has been held in the Paseo De Marianas in the past two years, but this year will be different because the festival will be moved to the Garapan Fishing Base.

The transition has become necessary because of how cramped up the original area of the festival has become.

The event was originally set to start last Saturday, Sept. 2, but because of harmful weather conditions, the festival’s opening was postponed.

According to Sablan, the festival will attract international representatives of the most common cultures found on the islands like Japanese, Chinese, Filipino, Korean, Bangladesh, etc.

Each culture will be provided a booth that they will decorate and serve food that is authentic to their culture.

These individuals will also dress in their cultural wear and perform.

This year, the festival will kick off with a “Parade of Cultures,” starting at 4:30pm, from the American Memorial Park to the Garapan Fishing Base.

According to Sablan, the goal is to make an individual feel like they actually visited a different place by attending the festival.

“Some of us haven’t been to different places. Now is the time we get to see how it is, what goes on with their language, their food, their traditional dances, and any demonstrations from their culture,” said Sablan.

According to Pacific Development Inc. managing director Gordon Marciano, the event also intends to attract tourists and is important because it recognizes the different ethnic groups that have made Saipan their home. Marciano said the diversity on the islands speaks volumes of the kind of people who inhabit Saipan.

“We are a multicultural island,” said Marciano.

This year the community should expect a cultural fashion show. This is significant because in the last two years, it was never done.

The event will take place this Saturday starting at 4:30pm and will held be every Saturday throughout the month of September.

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Kimberly Bautista Bautista
Kimberly Bautista is the youngest in the stable of Saipan Tribune reporters. She has covered a wide range of beats, including the community, housing, crime, and education, for the Saipan Tribune.

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