Young and old alike shared a piece of their heritage with each other at the festival.

International culture abounds in Castlegar

International Culture Festival a huge success for the Castlegar Refugee Project.

Over 800 people came out to support the International Cultural Festival held Monday at the Castlegar Community Complex. The event was a fundraiser and educational opportunity for the Castlegar Refugee Project. The group hopes to bring a refugee family to Castlegar sometime this spring.

Over 30 different groups showcased a wide variety of heritage aspects throughout the day. Dancing, calligraphy, henna tattoos, ethnic foods, origami and tea ceremonies were just some of the cultural treasures to be found.

The overwhelming response to the event was heartwarming to Castlegar Refugee Project chair Rosemary Manarin. “It has been wonderful, quite amazing,” she said. “We have had really good support. It is great to see the community coming together like this and sharing so many different cultural experiences.”

The fundraising aspect was definitely a success with about $10,000 coming in, bringing the refugee project’s finances to the point they can move to the next step in bringing a family here.

The festival turned out better than event organizer Julie Leffelaar had expected. “For me it was about the mingling around of the cultures,” she said. “I think Castlegar was ready for and needing this intercultural exchange. It has shown that Castlegar has a lot of spirit and talent.”

Leffelaar feels confident in the show of community support. “It feels like a mandate or yes from the community [for bringing in a refugee family],” she added.

Organizers are very thankful for all of the support they received as putting on the event did not cost them any money, enabling all of the funds received to go directly towards the refugees. A big part of that was thanks to RDCK Areas I and J and the Castlegar and District Recreation Commission not only providing the use of the facility but also suggesting the Family Day date, which turned out to be a perfect match for the festival.

Just Posted

Police seek witnesses to fatal weekend accident

Wayne Kernachan was struck by a vehicle while responding to an accident

Forestry workers set to begin job action in Kootenays

Operations in Castlegar, Cranbrook, Galloway, Elko, Radium, Golden may see job action this week.

Castlegar pastors find life in wheelchair a challenge

The men found the obstacles were both physical and mental.

Columbia Avenue paving scheduled for weekend

Paving on Castlegar’s main thoroughfare will take place in a few days, weather permitting.

Tour company plans shuttle service to Kelowna for stranded travellers

SMT Kootenay wants to help travellers get in and out of ‘Cancelgar’ in winter months

Josie Hotel will be ready on opening day, says management

West Kootenay’s first ski-in, ski-out boutique hotel to open this month

Laine scores 3 as Jets double Canucks 6-3

Injury-riddled Vancouver side drops sixth in a row

Deportation averted for Putin critic who feared return to Russia

Elena Musikhina, a vocal critic of the Kremlin, has been granted a two-year visitor’s permit in Canada

B.C. to allow Uber-style ride hailing services to operate in late 2019

Fee will be applied to fund options for disabled people

Auditor general takes aim at Liberals’ fighter-jet plan

Suditor general Michael Ferguson is about to release a new report on Canada’s attempts to buy new fighter jets

B.C. couple converts ambulance into a traveling home

The Revelstoke couple plan on touring B.C. ski hills then driving to Mexico

Cyclist defecates, throws own poop at car following B.C. crash

Man defecates in the street before throwing it at a driver locked in her vehicle

Jamie Koe, other curlers kicked out of bonspiel for being too drunk

‘You don’t kick around other players’ bags, it’s disrespectful and we expect better of our players’

Homicide victim found under B.C. bridge identified as Hells Angels member

Chad John Wilson was one of four men arrested in Spain in 2013 on allegations of smuggling cocaine.

Most Read