Parade of Nations slated Saturday in Houghton
HOUGHTON — Exotic international foods. Belly dancing and a Bollywood extravaganza.
The 30 anniversary of the Parade of Nations and Multicultural Festival kicks off at 11 a.m. Eastern time on Saturday, when the Parade of Nations marches from Hancock to Houghton across the Portage Lift Bridge.
The Cass Tech Marching band from Detroit will strut its stuff, and the bumblebee-striped Michigan Tech Pep Band will give its usual wild performance.
Floats representing the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community, the Michigan Tech Indian Students’ Association, Chinese Students and Scholars and community groups will be interspersed with the bands, bagpipers, and students and community members in colorful native dress, carrying flags of more than 60 nations.
Parade marshal is Darnishia Slade from Michigan Tech, longtime chair of the Parade of Nations. Tajah-Rayne Davise, winner of a high school essay contest on the meaning of multiculturalism, will also ride in the parade.
At noon, the multicultural festival begins at Dee Stadium. For just $5 to $8, you can get a full meal or choose from international tidbits at more than one dozen food booths.
In the Kids Corner, children can paint boomerangs and make Chinese paper dragons and boo-boo bunnies.
The big stage will feature international entertainment including the Finnish Kivijat Dancers, an African Students’ Association performance, bellydancers from 41 North, and other performers. The float winners and the winner of the “I Love Parade of Nations” raffle will be announced during the show.
The Parade of Nations and Multicultural Festival is free and open to the public. For more information, go to https://www.mtu.edu/international/events/parade-nations/