International Festival expects large numbers

By Sam Beard, @SamBeard_DE

Flavor and culture remain central in the 53rd annual International Festival, happening this week. 

Wednesday’s event, the food fair, has acquired a reputation of its own. Students prepare international specialties and serve them in small portions at the Student Center ballrooms.

The fair is from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., but Carla Coppi, director of the Center for International Education, said people should arrive early. 


“The food fair is wildly popular and unbelievably attended,” Coppi said. “People gather at a quarter to 11…it is so anticipated.”

The event is free, but food tickets will be for sale at the door for 50 cents each. Coppi said tickets generate funds for the Registered Student Organizations who participate.

Once inside, the tickets can be traded to any of the nine different groups for freshly cooked food. Dishes range in price from one-ticket snacks to 12-ticket entrees.

The food is prepared under the supervision of Student Center staff in the building’s kitchen although the students gather recipes and cook themselves.

International Festival 2015 is about more than food. This week’s events culminate from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday in the Student Center Ballrooms with the Cultural Show.

“Every year 700 to 1,000 people attend the Cultural Show,” Coppi said. “Get there early if you want a front seat to the world.”

The Cultural Show is free and will feature 14 dance and musical groups. Coppi said they will provide a high-energy, educational experience for attendees. 

Karthi Veeramani, chief of staff of the International Student Council, said there’s a gap between domestic and international students, and this is a chance for the two to converge. 

“We are trying to be that bridge to have some cross cultural connections,” said Veeramani, a graduate student in communication from St. Cloud, Minn.