With record-setting attendance and on an evening that beat the snow by a matter of hours, Colorado Academy honored the “strength that lies in differences.” More than 400 people, from grandparents to young children, packed the Campus Center for the annual Taste of CA: A Celebration of Cultures, enjoying home-made food and festivities from around the world.
The Co-Chairs, Christina Joymon and Meghan Geisler, were delighted by the turnout. “It’s more than I had even hoped for,” said Geisler. “We had an amazing team of volunteers for design, signage, decorations, and table centerpieces, and we are so grateful.”
“There are so many cultures at CA, but we are one community,” added Joymon. “It’s a beautiful night of life as we celebrate our different cultures.”
The quantity and variety of donated food was staggering—including Iranian lentil rice, Mexican red and green tamales, Chinese pearl meatballs, Japanese sushi, Vietnamese egg rolls, Swedish meatballs, Irish soda bread, Kenyan meat samosa, Philippine lumpiang shanghai, Argentinian empanadas, Israeli hamantaschen, German bratwurst and sauerkraut, and Australian sausage rolls.
A dozen students from Grades 5 to 11 greeted the crowd in different languages, including Mandarin, Spanish, German, Japanese, Hindi, Vietnamese, Dutch, Arabic, and Hebrew.
Pre-Kindergartners performed a “Peace” dance and the award-winning Junior Divinas, including CA’s own Seventh Grader Gabriela Gonzales, entertained with some terrific salsa dancing.
The Fourth and Fifth Grade Choir, under the direction of Brenda Bartel, sang a song with the lyrics “You are important to me. I see you and I value you.”
One of many highlights during the evening came during the “Parade of Nations” with CA students, parents, and faculty parading across the stage to celebrate their ethnic origins from all over the world.
Led by well-known hip hop percussionist Aaron Templer, and encouraged by a joyful Geisler and Joymon, a flash mob took the stage for the traditional Punjabi dhol and bhangra dance. The evening ended with more exuberant dancing and a demonstration by the USA Shaolin Kung Fu Academy.
Head of School Dr. Mike Davis had started the evening observing that of his many favorite events at CA, this one was high on the list for the best of reasons. “We share values,” Davis said. “We respect the dignity of everyone in our school.”
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