Have you ever wanted to travel to Argentina, Australia, Brazil, the Caribbean, China, India or Ireland? How can you do that without buying a plane ticket, getting a passport, or taking time off from work?
There is a way to do just that in the cosmopolitan city of Houston, which is one of America’s most diverse urban areas. It’s called the Houston International Festival (or IFest for short). For two weekends (this year April 26-27 and May 3-4), downtown Houston becomes another place on the planet. Literally. The countries/regions that I just listed have been the featured cultures at IFest in the last six years.
If you want to visit Australia in the next two weekends, head to IFest because that is the highlighted country this year. The culture of “the land down under” will be presented with a lot of activities. I must say as an American expatriate, I always resonated with the Aussies I met traveling or working. They are a lot like us Americans, yet also a little bit different (in a very good way) so it should be a lot of fun.
Between 100,000-150,000 people visit IFest annually. This is probably the largest international festival in the United States. When I teach Intercultural Communication here at HBU, I offer students extra credit to attend the festival and then have them write a paper about the food, music, and cultural artifacts that they observed using the theoretical concepts we learned in class. There is a lot to eat, hear, and see! Continue reading