Holland hosts first international festival

Ottawa County
A photo of a performer at the Holland's first international festival.

A photo of a performer at the Holland’s first international festival.

HOLLAND, Mich. (WOOD) — The city of Holland hosted its first-ever international festival at the Holland Civic Center on Saturday afternoon. 

The festival included food from around the world as well as live entertainment. The city invited a musician from Uganda, an award-winning Armenian American musician, Native American tribes and Flamenco dancers.

Dozens filled the civic center to watch Saturday’s performers.

City leaders say while they’ve had multicultural events in years past, they’ve never had an event of this magnitude. 

Organizers say they wanted to host the festival this year in celebration of the 20th anniversary of their sister city partnership with Santiago de Queretaro, Queretaro, Mexico.

City leaders say the festival is a reminder to all groups that they are welcome and embraced in Holland.

“No matter what’s happening politically, what’s really important are the relationships between people,” said Esther FiFelski with the city of Holland. “When we can have those relationships between Holland and [Santiago de] Queretaro that speaks volumes about what community does.”

The city says they’re planning to make the festival an annual event. They’ve already set a date for next year’s festival: Aug. 15, 2020.

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