The Dayton International Festival, Inc. (DIFI) held their 41st annual A World A’Fair this past weekend at the Dayton Convention Center with over 13,500 attendees. An entire weekend was dedicated to celebrating diverse cultures of more than 30 different countries; all of which have a presence within the Miami Valley. Experiencing traditional music and dance in combination with unique food and drinks from many cultures in one place makes this a special event. It is definitely one that should not be missed.
As a first time attendee I was overwhelmed with excitement when entering the convention center and hearing the music and laughter that filled the room. Ready to take on the world with my pamphlet in hand I ventured to country after country, one tapa and beer after the next. Discovering something new about each culture on my world tour sparked my curiosity and need to know more about the world around us. As each day passes we are more easily able to connect with those thousands of miles away. The World A’Fair is a fun and incredibly interactive way to learn about our neighbors.
To engage the children passports were handed out to encourage them to learn more about each culture. Each child would take their passport and visit each country for a stamp. However, before a stamp could be given out the children would have to first answer a question about that country. At the end of their adventure they could present their completed passport to be entered into a drawing to win international prizes.
Don’t worry adults, beer passports were available for you! One beer passport would provide the opportunity to sample 12 international beers. What a deal! After your beer passport was completed you had the opportunity to vote for your favorite beer and enter to win a prize. My favorite beer ended up being from Lebanon and I probably would have not tried it had it not been for this cultural event.
In addition to the passports that took you from one culture to the next, there were performances going on at all times on two different stages. This year A World A’Fair was able to bring back by popular demand the Kenya Safari Acrobats. This performance in particular was one of my favorites from the weekend and I could easily tell why they are a fan favorite. The Kenya Safari Acrobats know how to bring excitement and wonder to a room with their enthusiasm while performing breathtaking acrobatic numbers.
Overall, A World A’Fair was a great time to spend the weekend and share it with friends and family. I’m already looking forward to next year when I can get another glimpse into the cultures that help make up my home, the Miami Valley.