Holiday Folk Fair International

Jason and I had the opportunity to attend The Holiday Folk Fair International this past weekend.  I haven’t been to the Holiday Folk Fair since I was on a school field trip in the fourth grade , and that was back in 1994.  This type of fair isn’t exactly Jason’s cup of tea, but he agreed to go with me anyway.

The Holiday Folk Fair is “America’s premiere multicultural festival” and “celebrates the cultural heritage of the people living in southeastern Wisconsin”.  You get to experience different cultures by walking around and listening to music, watching dance performances, trying many different ethnic foods/drinks, and shopping.

This year at the fair we had the opportunity to learn more about these different ethnicities:

  • Arab
  • Bavarian
  • Chinese
  • Czech
  • Egyptian
  • Filipino
  • French
  • German
  • Greek
  • Indian
  • Irish
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Mexican
  • Native American
  • Nepali
  • Senegalese
  • Serbian
  • Slovak
  • Thai
  • Ugandan
  • Vietnamese

Each food booth had menus available and some even had wrapped samples so you could see the foods that are available for purchase (very helpful).  A few of the booths had the volunteers dressed in costume according to their culture, which was very neat to see and helped set the mood.

We arrived later in the day, but still had the opportunity to watch a few different groups of dancers perform.  With my being half Greek, I really wanted to see the Greeks perform and luckily we arrived just in time.  We watched a handful of performances and then strolled on over to the different food booths.

I like to try new things, especially when it comes to food.  Jason…not so much. haha  The first booth we came to was the Serbian booth.  They had an assortment of filled puff pastries (among other things) and I snatched up a chocolate filled Phylo pastry.  It was delicious!  I tried egg rolls from almost every Asian booth just to see if there was a difference at all.  I think my favorite ended up being the chicken egg roll from the Filipino booth, but they were all scrumptious.  We tried out a rigatoni pasta with meatballs and bread stick dish from the Italian booth.  Jason had a brat from the Bavarian booth, and we both had Avgolemeno (Lemon Rice Soup) with Greek bread at the Greek booth.  We did purchase other random treats from other booths, I just can’t remember everything. haha  We sampled food from several other booths and bought food to take home since we were getting full.

All in all, it’s about what I remembered the fair to be.  If we were to go back again, I would like to spend more time watching the different performances.  I was disappointed because I missed out on seeing the African-American and American Indian performances.  I enjoy listening to that type of music so I am sure I would have loved the performances, too.  Another thing we would do is bring more cash.  We didn’t realize that the majority of the different shops and food booths were cash only so I had to run to the ATM to take more cash out.  Overall, I had a good time and definitely worth the experience.

Here are a few pictures that we took at the fair.  I did take a few videos of the performances but am unable to share at this time due to the file sizes.


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