CGCC hosts Culture Fest

Columbia Gorge Community College, a sanctuary college, is hosting its fourth annual Gorge Culture Fest on its Hood River-Indian Creek Campus on Saturday, May 19 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

“Somos Uno, One Community” will celebrate diversity and inclusion with a variety of activities for adults and children, and it is free and open to the public.

At 11 a.m. Ellen Donoghue will open the festivities with a community meditation.

Among the headliners, the Obo Addy Legacy Project will conduct an hour-long drumming performance and workshop beginning at 11:15 a.m. With some 30 drums, the “drumming workshop [is] built around the five hand techniques developed by Obo Addy and his brothers in the 1970s. The techniques will be taught singly and with both hands. These techniques enable drummers to find an incredible range of sound within the drum while keeping their hands safe from damage that can be incurred from improper technique,” according to the group’s website.

This Ghanaian performance group is “committed to building community by offering culturally authentic music and dance, to inspire audiences and educate about our [African] heritage and culture,” said a press release.

Song Dynasty, a collaborative project between Taiwanese jazz musicians and Canadian/American musicians, will perform elements of western music with lyrics from the classical Chinese poet Li Qingzhao. The group was founded by Canadian guitarist Ben Holt in 2015 while Holt was a graduate student at the University of North Texas’ Jazz Studies Program. This event is scheduled from 12:30-1:15 p.m.

The festival also features the N’chi Wanapum Canoe Family, an organization meant to connect youth with elders in an effort to teach youth about the culture and traditions of the four river tribes which include the Warm Springs, Yakama, Umatilla, and Nez Perce. Twenty Native American dancers from Warm Springs, dressed in regalia, will perform traditional dances and songs to the accompaniment of drummers. This performance is scheduled from 3-4 p.m.

Other events include a Privileges for Sale Workshop presented by the CGCC Gender and Sexuality Alliance Club from 1-1:45 p.m., a Salsa dancing demonstration and lesson by the Secret Salsa Society from 1:30-2:15 p.m., and, a piñata contest for children hosted by CGCC’s Juntos Club from 2:30-2:50 p.m.

In addition to the aforementioned activities, the college’s community partners will conduct family-friendly activities, and food vendors including Last Call PDX, a Taiwanese Beef Noodle cart, will be present. Throughout the day, Columbia Gorge Music Society will be performing.

CGCC is located at 1730 College Way, Hood River.

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