Several cultures blended together on Saturday at Iroquois Park for the GlobaLou Festival.
Americana World Community Center hosts the annual event. Despite the heat, the crowd of all ages enjoyed a flavorful variety of foods, music, and dancing.
Marianna Lane was among the performers sharing their heritage with a Mexican folklore dance. Lane moved to Louisville from Mexico 20 years ago. While she spoke fluent English, she had to help her mother learn the language.
For many families who move to Louisville, Americana is a valuable resource. Development Director Gianna Bennett said the center has one of Kentucky’s largest ESL (English as a Second Language) programs.
“Louisville is one of the most heavily-immigrated cities in the United States. We have a large immigrant population, a refugee population,” Bennett said. “We think it’s great to bring people from all different cultures and international backgrounds to have music, food, share their culture in different ways, and have it right here in the South Louisville community where it is so diverse.”
Louisville Pure Tap® had a front-row seat to the festivities, serving up ice cold water on a hot day.
“Louisville has great water. We have an opportunity to be able to touch so many points within our communities and it really is reassuring when you hear them (the public) let us know how much they love Pure Tap,” said Ginny Adwell, Louisville Water Community Relations Specialist.
Spread throughout the artisan craft booths and food vendors, people found information about GED programs, health insurance options, the library, TARC, and resource organizations such as Catholic Charities and Kentucky Refugee Ministries.
When Bennett saw Louisville Water set up at Waterfront Wednesday, she knew they needed to have a tent at GlobaLou.
“There is a lot of pride from people who are from Louisville originally and drinking the tap water, so it’s good to spread that out too,” said Bennett.
Adwell was thrilled to share Pure Tap and enjoy the event.
“We have seen so many different cultural groups represented here. They have danced, they have sung, and the beautiful colors (of the costumes) are so vibrant. The young kids who have participated, it has been a beautiful thing to see.”