Downtown Rogers Showcases a World of Cultures
The 12th Annual NWA International Festival in downtown Rogers attracted hundreds despite the chilly temperatures and the rainy weather.
It’s the region’s largest international-themed festival with more than 50 countries represented in Northwest Arkansas.
Rhythms from every continent had people dancing on the main stage including Patricia Day from Colombia, who was dressed in traditional clothing.
Day has been participating in the International Festival since it began 12 years ago.
“Our food, our traditions, our family, everything, we want to show it,” Day said.
Leonardo Muñoz, from Mexico, was dressed in “charro” and performed the Mexican dance “El Zapateado.” Muñoz said it’s important to remember where you came from.
“It’s your heritage and you should be proud of it,” Muñoz said.
There were cultural exhibits, music and dance performances, traditional ethnic foods, a fashion show and free kids activities were all part the day’s festivities.
“See cultures exchange their ideas and their beliefs, their joy that they have, and their food,” Christie Wagner said. “It was amazing,” she said.
The mission of the NWA International Festival is to promote, educate and serve the diverse
cultural interests of Rogers and Northwest Arkansas.
It’s organized by the Rogers-Lowell Chamber of Commerce and dozens of volunteers.
“Even though each year is different and challenging, somehow everything comes together at the end and it’s beautiful just to see that,” said Geovanny Sarmiento, VP of Minority Business Development for the chamber.
Patricia Day said there are many reasons Northwest Arkansas attracts people from all over the world.
“This is a beautiful place to live in the United States, it’s clean, it’s friendly, it’s beautiful,” Day said.
The festival also included the 5th annual international fashion show and for the the first time food lovers of all ages enjoyed sampling ethnic foods.