For the fifth consecutive year, Missouri University of Science and Technology and Rolla residents will unite to host Celebration of Nations on Sept. 27. This year, the multicultural event will feature a performance by the popular bluegrass group Jimmie Allison and the Ozark Rounders.
The event will begin at 11 a.m. with the Parade of Nations, which features representatives from over 80 nations, marching bands and floats. The best view of the parade is on Pine Street, in downtown Rolla.
Following the parade, a festival including vendors, cultural exhibitions and activities will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Rolla Band Shell, 9th and Oak streets, in Rolla. The Rolla farmers market will participate in this year’s festival and will be located in the city parking lot between 7th and 8th streets, near Phelps County Bank.
Other activities throughout the day include International Idol, a talent competition, at 1 p.m. and additional musical performances throughout the day. Community member Steven Eudaly will manage the sound for all the staged performances.
Allison and his band will share their experience and provide musical tips during two scheduled 25-minute bluegrass workshops that will be held under the blue shade structure during the festival. Other 30-minute workshops include an offering by the Missouri S&T Aerial Swing Dance Club and a Merengue dance workshop provided by Janessa Chasteen, an adjunct instructor in Missouri S&T’s Intensive English Program. All workshops and performances are free and open to all ages.
The event, created in 2010 to celebrate the cultural diversity of the Rolla community, features opportunities to taste different international cuisines, create multicultural arts and crafts and soak up cultural entertainment. The popular camel rides will return to the festival as well. Celebration of Nations is family friendly and offers plenty of activities for kids.
Kids can have their facsimile passport stamped as they visit each international vendor booth. This document will be reviewed at the Passport Booth and an International Ambassador certificate will be issued.
Attendance at Celebration of Nations is free of charge, but some activities may cost. Celebration of Nations is sponsored by the International and Cultural Affairs office, Missouri S&T, the city of Rolla and area businesses.
For a complete schedule of events and a map of the parade route, visit nations.mst.edu. For more information on Celebration of Nations, contact Richie Myers, program coordinator for international and cultural affairs at firstname.lastname@example.org.