April Culture Challenge!


After all the positive feedback I received about my March Culture Challenge, I’m putting out another one for April. I don’t know if any of you actually ventured out and attended any of the events, but you certainly enjoyed reading about them. And I appreciated your feedback!

I focus on international cultures and diverse ethnicities. Every month on behalf of our school’s Diversity Committee, I compile a list of diverse cultural events that might be of interest to our school community, which I’ve decided to share here as well.  My intended audience is families with elementary school aged children, so if you have younger or older children, research accordingly.

I would love to attend many of the events listed here, but I have my eye on two events in particular. One is a favorite we’ve gone to several years in the past; the other is totally new to us and I’ve always been curious about that series for kids. Can you guess which ones they are? And which events look particularly interesting to you?


gospel_dance_aileyRocka Your Soul: LA’s Celebration of Gospel, Dance and Ailey, Grand Park, Saturday, 1pm-5pm. The Music Center celebrates Los Angeles’ own Alvin Ailey and his iconic dance masterpiece Revelations, beloved by people around the world. This festival is a multi-dimensional cultural experience inspired by the rich heritage of the African American community and will let visitors of all ages engage directly with dance, music, and the arts.

FacetoFacewithMagicbyNikkiJeeThe Renaissance Pleasure Faire, Santa Fe Dam Recreation Area, Irwindale. Saturdays and Sundays, April 6 – May 19. Travel back to the 16th century and experience the glory of life during the Renaissance era. The faire provides “a cornucopia of diversity where we are unified in inviting our guests to enjoy an environment we have created to escape from the stresses and demands of the modern day.” There will be artisans of all media, entertainment galore, food trucks and booths, games and rides (including pony and camel rides), a Kids Kingdom (with games, crafts, story-telling, song, shows, and characters), and a gnome quest!

FamilyJam_SouthernAfricaFamily Jam: Thumbs Up! The Music of Southern Africa, Fowler Museum, UCLA, Sunday, 12pm-2pm. The thumb piano, also known as the kalimba or mbira, is a popular instrument throughout much of Africa. Join the musicians from Masanga to enjoy its beautiful sounds and make your own lamellophone on the opening day of Ernest Cole Photographer and Mandela for President. 

  • WEEKEND OF APRIL 13 & 14

Korean_danceFamily Festival Celebrating Looking East: Ruben’s Encounter with Asia, Getty Center, Saturday, 10am-5:30pm. Experience Korean culture in this family festival inspired by the exhibition Looking East: Rubens’s Encounter with Asia. Master choreographers Kim Eung Hwa, Kwan Gyu Lim, and Don Kim present their world-class dance companies. Make your own charm, propeller, or Korean headdress at interactive workshops.

Chumash_Day15th Annual Chumash Day Powwow and Inter-Tribal Gathering, Malibu Bluffs Park, Saturday & Sunday. Experience native foods, children’s activities, story telling, Native American art, and Native American crafts.

Western Heritage Family Day: My Family, My History, My Story, The Autry in Griffith Park, Sunday, 1pm-4pm. In this workshop, research your family history with the Southern California Genealogical Society, learn from storyteller Kat High (Hupa) how many Native Americans tell stories to remember their histories, and view a one-day-only exhibition on family histories created by students from Boyle Heights. Finally, make a time capsule of your own to preserve your family history.

The Renaissance Pleasure FaireSanta Fe Dam Recreation Area, Irwindale. Saturdays and Sundays, ongoing until May 19. See description last weekend.

  •  WEEKEND OF APRIL 20 & 21

a_tale_of_indiaTales from Around the World: A Tale of India, The Broad Stage at the Santa Monica College Performing Arts Center, Saturday, 11am. Celebrate magical tales, music, and dance from the other side of the world. After the show, gather on the Plaza for a celebration of the arts, crafts, and tastes of India. See website to buy tickets.

VikingScandinavian Festival, Cal Lutheran University, Thousand Oaks, Saturday & Sunday. Experience games and crafts for children, a Viking Encampment and Sami Village, a food court and food demonstrations, live music and dancing, shopping, lectures, and a festival stage.

Celebrate_IsraelCelebrate Israel Festival, Cheviot Hills Recreation Center, Sunday, 10am – 7pm. Come celebrate Israel’s 65th Independence Day beginning with a “Salute to Israel” walk (starts at 9am) and then continuing all day with musical performances, artists who have traveled from Israel especially for the festival, a kids zone (with crafts, puppy petting zoo, reptile show, magicians, stilt walkers, face painters, jugglers, and drum circles), an amusement park with rides, Israel’s Time Travel Tunnel, and a model of SpaceIL (first Israeli spaceship).

The Renaissance Pleasure FaireSanta Fe Dam Recreation Area, Irwindale. Saturdays and Sundays, ongoing until May 19. See description under first weekend.

  • WEEKEND OF APRIL 27 & 28

letter_to_momoLos Angeles International Children’s Film Festival, Aero Theatre in Santa Monica, April 26 – May 5. In partnership with New York International Children’s Film Festival, the American Cinematheque brings a selection of the most compelling recent films for kids to the West Coast for the first time. Included are beautifully animated features from Japan (A Letter to Momo, Wolf Children), France (A Monster in Paris, in 3-D), Canada (The Day of the Crows) and the U.S. (Meet the Small Potatoes), a Chinese take on a famed fairy tale (Cinderella Moon) and a short film showcase. And if you think your kid might be interested in being a Kid Critic, take a look here (applications due April 11).

Aquarium of the Pacific Children's DayInternational Children’s Day, Aquarium of the Pacific, Long Beach, Saturday & Sunday, 9am-5pm. Celebrating the amazing talents of children of all cultures, this festival will feature international music and dance performances by kids. An international choir, West African, Pacific Islander, Mexican folkloric, Cambodian, Chinese, Korean, and Japanese traditional dance are among the children’s performances. Kids of all ages can enjoy martial arts demonstrations and can also partake in an international drum circle, Native American crafts, Pacific Islander children’s games, face painting, mural painting, educational programs, and more.

VasenWorld City Series: Väsen & Scandia Dancers, Walt Disney Concert Hall, Sunday, 11am and 12:30pm. Come get a feel for the Nordic culture with Väsen, a Swedish acoustic instrumental group who transforms “venerable polskas and waltzes into modern groove masterpieces,” and Scandia Dancers who perform a repertoire of traditional folk dances in authentic handmade costumes from Sweden, Norway, and Finland.

The Renaissance Pleasure FaireSanta Fe Dam Recreation Area, Irwindale. Saturdays and Sundays, ongoing until May 19. See description under first weekend.

Were you able to guess which events I have my eye on? Which events do you think you might want to attend? I’d love to hear about it!

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