Worldfest Louisville

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Louisville’s 14th annual Worldfest was September 2 to 5, featuring food, dance, music and education from cultures around the world.

The city of Louisville reports that over the past 15 years, 35% of our city’s growth has been from international residents. This is a bit higher than the national average, but reflects a national trend in increased immigration. Mayor Greg Fischer feels strongly that we should be pro-active about this trend to our own benefit. He said “Cities that embrace and encourage their international citizens and cultures will thrive, have a stronger quality of life and will attract new growth and jobs”. Worldfest is part of that effort.

There were over 100 vendors this year selling food, jewelry, clothing and art as well as people giving out information on everything from Medicaid to Islam to jobs.

The “Global Village” was set up with representatives from more than 20 countries. All nine of Louisville’s Sister Cities and seven Celtic nations were present alongside a special new exhibit of the Confucius Institute at WKU. There were performances and food demonstrations throughout the weekend.

Some 100,000 visitors enjoyed a beautiful weekend of food, song, dance and culture on the Belvedere. Kudos to the city for creating an event where multiculturalism isn’t a political football but a way to share life in a welcoming community.

Jeff Tinnell