For a taste of Lebanon’s cultural diversity, come to 8th Street this Saturday, October 12, for the first Downtown Lebanon Multicultural Festival.
The event will last from 1pm to 6pm, featuring live entertainment, food vendors, and assorted activities for attendees.
The festival is the result of collaboration between Downtown Lebanon’s Main Street, HACC, the City of Lebanon, and Juntos de Lebanon, a local nonprofit that promotes Hispanic culture and provides educational and cultural programs.
“The activity is a collective effort of several people, organizations, restaurants, musicians, institutions and I am deeply grateful to the people who gave their support for this activity, their volunteer work and their ideas,” said Juntos de Lebanon President Guadalupe Barba. “Without the participation of each of them this would not have been possible. We are all a great team.”
Among the festival’s offerings are Caribbean, Central American, German, Italian, and Mexican food, as well as sushi, pupusas, and desserts.
“Our goal is to show and share the cultural diversity of people residing in Lebanon, to have a day in community where we can all get closer to other people, other flavors, other sounds,” said Barba.
DJ Guasa will open the event at 1pm, followed by Dr. M and the rhythm.bots at 2pm, a mariachi band at 3:30pm, and Mako Swing, which will play Latin dance music such as bachata and merengue, from 5pm until the event’s end. Barba hopes the music and dancing will bring attendees together, saying, “Music is a universal language.”
Children are encouraged to come to the event, where they will be able to play dominoes, draw with sidewalk chalk, dance, or hit a piñata.
“Culture is food for our soul and it is a good school for our children and young people,” said Barba.
Barba hopes that the Downtown Lebanon festival will return next year and grow to include more cultural diversity.
“Downtown is the heart of our community and we want people to feel it that way.”