For more than three decades, members of the University and the greater Charlotte communities have flocked to UNC Charlotte’s annual International Festival to sample cultural traditions and fabulous foods from around the world. Now in its 38th year, this year’s International Festival will take place from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM, Saturday, Sept. 28, in and around the Barnhardt Student Activity Center.
As UNC Charlotte’s longest-running cultural event, the festival attracts thousands to the campus for a full sensory experience - the sights, sounds and tastes of more than 50 countries and cultures.
"The original purpose of the International Festival was to provide a public venue in which to celebrate the cultural diversity represented by members of the University and Charlotte international community. The growth of the festival’s presence over the years is indicative of the rich ethnic diversity that is present today. And so we continue to celebrate," said Marian Beane, chair of the International Festival's planning committee.
– Marian Beane, Planning Committee Chair
Visitors should plan to spend several hours, or the entire day, wandering through tents of brightly colored displays, conversing with participants representing their countries and cultures, tasting authentic cuisine from around the world, and soaking up the atmosphere of song, dance and story.
Maureen Gibson, coordinator of international initiatives in the Office of International Programs, noted that "more than 700 hours of student volunteer work and countless hours by our partners across campus and in the community make the International Festival possible. Student volunteers are committed to supporting the University’s globalization efforts and contribute in many ways – from pre-festival promotion to post-festival cleanup."
The International Festival is sponsored by the Office of International Programs, Cone University Center, Recreational Facilities Management, and the Student Union.
Admission and parking are free; the International Festival will be held rain or shine. More information is available online.
International Festival Food
International Festival Performances