It’s time for the 43rd Annual International Festival, A World A’Fair this weekend at the Dayton Convention Center. Since the 1970’s, the festival has been celebrating diversity in food, music, dance, ethnic dress, exhibits and cultures from around the world. This year, two new member organizations appear at the festival, representing the Sudan and the Ukraine.This year’s theme is “The Market Place” and you’ll have a chance to tour the markets of the world, both present day and past. T
The Dayton International Festival is very proud to have State Representative Niraj Antani as the 2016 Honorary Chairperson. State Representative Antani has been a long time supporter of A World A’Fair, joining DIFI’s Youth Group his sophmore year in high school. He has continued to support the festival in many different capacities and is proud to be a part of an event such as this that highlights the diversity of Dayton
“A World A’Fair promotes the rich cultural diversity that exists in our community and embraces the aspects which make us unique”, said Raj Soin, Chairman of Soin, LLC and present sponsor. “This event provides an opportunity for everyone in the greater Dayton Region to appreciate the differences among people of various cultures and experience their own cultures, history and traditions.”
On Friday night pick up a Beer Passport, which will get you a 2 oz sample from 11 “countries.” At just $10, this may well be the cheapest trip around the world you can get. But be sure and get your passport early, as only 500 will be available. And while there’s no passport for food, you can eat your way across the world as many of the boots will be serving up traditional foods from the countries they represent.
The Health Fair, presented by the Asian American Council of Dayton and sponsored by Kettering Health Network, is back by popular demand with expanded days and hours. Available to all attendees on Saturday, May 21 from 12noon – 4:00pm and Sunday, May 22 from 12noon – 3:00pm, visitors will be offered free screenings for blood pressure, the Wheel of Health and giveaways, as well as educational materials on stress and sugar. There will also be educational information on sports medicine and sports related injuries. With an appreciation to the men and women who have served our country, the Dayton VA Medical Center and Wright Patterson Air Force Base will partner and offer literature for both active military personnel and Veterans to assist them in their health choices and care options.
The ever popular and expanded Children’s Area, which is sponsored by Dayton Children’s Hospital, will once again be available for families to participate in games and engage in crafts. Children can also allow their creativity to shine by building things in the LEGO® exhibit area. Also, the ever popular Children’s Passport will be available and offers a fun way for children to learn about each culture, as they will be asked to answer a question at each culture’s booth before their passport is stamped.
New this year… Guest Band, “Authorized Personnel” will be playing on the informal stage Saturday evening, starting at 9:00pm. They will be playing many different styles of music, representing the United States, so we are sure you will recognize a tune or two, and you may even want to get up and dance.
Also new this year… The Humane Society of Greater Dayton will be holding a pet adoption event Friday evening from 5:00-7:00pm, Saturday from 2:00-5:00pm and if all animals have not been adopted, Sunday afternoon from 12:00-3:00pm. Stop by to find your new best friend, or just learn how you can help these animals in need of a good home.
Back by popular demand… The Kenyan Safari Acrobats on our formal stage is a must see. On Friday night only, the Beer Passports event for adults returns. For a small fee you can sample beers from 12 different cultures. Also returning this year will be a Naturalization Ceremony celebrating new U.S. citizens, which will take place on Saturday, May 21. The Dayton Chess Club was so popular last year that they will be back this year with exhibits, tournaments and open play time.
Countries represented at A World A’Fair include: Various African countries, Burundi, China, Colombia, Czech Republic, Egypt, Ethiopia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Lebanon, Mexico, the Netherlands, Norway, Panama, Peru, the Philippines, Poland, U.S. Territory of Puerto Rico, Scotland, South Slavic Countries, Sudan, Turkey, Ukraine, the United States of America (represented by the DIFI Youth Group) and Vietnam.
A World A’Fair is open to the public on the following dates and times:
Friday, May 20 5:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m.
Saturday, May 21 11:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.
Sunday, May 22 11:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
There is a fee for attendance with tickets available at the door for the following prices:
Adults $8.00 Senior Citizens $5.00 Youth (6-18) $4.00
Advance sale tickets are available at AAA, La Llama Place, Siebenthaler’s and Krogers with discounts available for both adult and youth tickets.
A World A’Fair was incorporated as a non-profit organization, known as the Dayton International Festival, Inc. It has grown to include the cultures of more than 30 participating groups. For more information including the schedule of all performances, visit www.aworldafair.org.
Mark your calendars, local foodies !!! May 18th -20th, 2012 at the Dayton Convention Center is the “World A’Fair.” For those who don’t know, this International Festival has been a Dayton tradition for over 40 years. “A World A’Fair.” features food, dancing, music, costumes, and cultural exhibits that represent the ethnic backgrounds and cultures of the residents of the Dayton area. What better way to sample cuisine from around the world all by taking a few steps?
According to the World a’Fair Website,“Folklore Around the World” will be this year’s cultural theme. All of the participating countries will present folk traditions at their booths. Native American singing and dancing will be the Featured Entertainment. Spanish Flamenco dancers will be new entertainment for this year.
But you know your Food Adventurers visit this International Festival for one thing… FOOD !! In between hugging accordion players, and dancing with exotic women in traditional garb, we like to hit the booths for some international tastes.
South Slavic Booth: The Creme Puffs here are to die for. They have traditional choices as well as chocolate ones.
Germany Booth: Everyone enjoys the Bratwurst here. We prefer loading it up with sauerkraut and mustard for that perfect bite. The soft pretzels are not bad either !
Scotland Booth: Daring Food Adventurers should try the Haggis .. it is a traditional Scottish dish. This version is ground liver meat served with crackers. Can you handle the real deal? Not your style? Then try their “Bridie” meat pie for a more tame dish.
Ireland Booth: The Beer here is the main attraction, but kids love the Irish Pub Fries.
Dutch Booth: Try the Appelflappen (fritters), and enjoy the women cooking in traditional outfits.
Greek Booth: The Gyros are fantastic here. They are the same group that makes the gyros and chicken gyros for the Greek Festival. The onions on the gyros make it fun to breathe on your friends afterwards.
Mexican Booth: The tacos and empanadas are made to order at this booth. The prices are cheaper than most other booths.
Italy Booth: Sure you can grab a freshly grilled Italian sausage with peppers and onions, but may we suggest their fabulous desserts? The Italian Wedding Cake is phenomenal and filled with strawberries and whipped cream. The Tiramisu and Cannoli are also top notch.
Korea Booth: The Veggie Dumplings were incredible. The dumplings
are huge and have a great, fresh taste.
Lebanon Booth: The Falafel is our favorite offering! This veggie patty is served in a pita for a great tasting sandwich.
This festival is close to The Big Ragu’s heart. We have some great childhood memories of coming to the World a’Fair with our parents and grandparents. You may even see The Big Ragu volunteering at the Italy food booths! This event is a true Dayton tradition, and May 18-20th is your chance to leave your mark on the legacy.
The secret to this festival is to visit many booths and try different food offerings. You never know what you are going to discover. A World A’Fair is a perfect excuse to take an afternoon, or an evening and escape everyday life for a couple of hours. and immerse yourself into different cultures and different foods.
All of the information can be found on www.worldafair.org. Tickets are $5 in advance, or $3 for children at any Kroger location. Tickets are also sold at the door for a couple of dollars more. You can also check out the website and find opportunities to volunteer for a country’s booth. However you decide to participate, make sure you visit this festival, bring friends, or kids and create some memories.
Have some memories to share about A WORLD A’FAIR ??? Are you coming to the 2012 event?? Please comment below!