Saturday marked the 46th International Bazaar and it did not disappoint. Western held the event in the University Union Grand Ballroom from 5-10 p.m., which gave people plenty of time to come in and join the dancing, music, food and fun.
The International Bazaar is here today from the influence and creativity of Peggy Davern. She was an advisor for international students and devised a plan to honor and celebrate the students. To continue her legacy, Western has and will continue to celebrate this event, which is a reminder of the work she has put into Western. The Bazaar is about the students and after talking to one of the students at the Bazaar, you always learn something new!
Tara Lyne with the western anthropology and sociology club, talked about her booth Turtle Island, which is the original name of North America. At her booth, she serves traditional dishes like Three Sisters Stew and Spiced Chocolate Fudge, which is also found in some indigenous clay pots.
Turtle Island is just one example of how students honor their countries and culture. With 10 different countries, one continent and the peace corps, there is a lot to represent and experience at the International Bazaar.
The beginning of the Bazaar had students and some children talking about their idea of what peace is. After everyone spoke about what peace means to them, the essays and poems were kept by the Phi Beta Delta fraternity, which is a part of the international honor society.
At the international market booth, a multitude of items were being in accordance with the countries participating in the Bazaar. Patti Jones spoke about the “brain child” of the event (Davern), and the work that the students put in by dressing up in traditional clothing and honoring their countries and or club.
With everything going on, some people must be in charge of running everything and that responsibility falls on Dana Sistko who works at international student services. She mentioned that although managing the event is her responsibility, the heavy lifting does fall on the students and the 100 plus volunteers.
Sistko went on to explain that the foods authentic tastehas to do with the students being involved in cooking and prepping the food with Sodexo. She also went on to explain that the planning takes place in October to make sure everything is done correctly.
The reason the Bazaar was held for five hours was due to a poll taken, in which the majority liked the time and having the event be only one day, versus having it expand to two days like it use to.
Once in the Grand Ballroom, the emersion of the Bazaar is surreal. The whole room was filled with people of different backgrounds. Everyone at the event was full of smiles because they were not only proud of what they have accomplished, but also for sticking to what it is that they stand for.