© AMANDA JESS - THE NEWS
Approximately 30 people took part in the fashion show at the Fusion Festival on Sept. 28. The models were showcasing traditional dress from more than 15 countries.
NEW GLASGOW - The Multicultural Association saw their biggest turnout yet for the annual Fusion Festival on Saturday.
Co-president of the association, Mick O’Neil, estimated approximately 700 people attended the event throughout the day.
“This is a chance for the people of Pictou County to see diverse culture.”
From noon to 6 p.m. in Glasgow Square, people were treated to music from other countries, a fashion show, belly dancing, henna tattoos, face painting and lots of food.
“We’re also highlighting sports from around the world,” said O’Neil.
They were drawing attention to cricket and hurling, the national sport of Ireland.
The field game is played with a short wooden stick, a small ball and rugby-like goal posts. The objective is to hit the ball over the opposing team’s goalpost crossbar for one point or under it and into a net for three.
O’Neil moved to Nova Scotia from Kilkenny, Ireland with his family five years ago and got involved with the association.
He said the Sept. 28 event was going very well. The weather finally cooperated with a beautiful sunny day after two years of downpours.
Ajay Shirke, treasurer for the multicultural association board, thinks the sun helped convince people to attend.
Although he was there to volunteer, he was looking forward to a lot of the festivities.
The best part for him is the fashion show.
“I get a chance to see dresses from all over,” he said
Next would be the food. He said he tries to sample cuisine from different countries, rather than India.
Some of his favourites include a dish from Syria and Iranian food.
Shirke is from western India and moved to Nova Scotia almost five years ago.
His wife, Nanda, is co-chair of the festival.
He finds the association helpful because it offers newcomers chances to interact with others.
“It’s an opportunity to come and meet people that want to meet people,” he said, explaining that many who come to the multicultural association’s events are in similar positions.
“They likely recently moved to the area and are looking to make friends.”
The fifth Fusion Festival was part of Culture Days, an annual event across Canada offering hundreds of free activities over three days.
On Twitter: @NGNewsAmanda