Explore Columbia’s Sister Cities Event
The second annual “Explore Columbia’s Sister Cities” event will be held on Sunday, March 24 from 1-5pm at The Mall in Columbia. It will celebrate our community’s five sister cities — Cergy-Pontoise, France (1977); Tres Cantos, Spain (1990); Tema, Ghana (2014); Cap-Haitien, Haiti (2016); and our newest sister city in Liyang, China (2018).
There will be free dance and musical performances representing the cultures of each of the five sister cities, two Ghanaian/West African drum circles, and a sister cities fashion show. Every sister city will have a table highlighting its culture as well as the opportunities each sister city relationship offers to local residents, including travel and hosting opportunities for youth and adults. There will also be paintings and crafts for sale.
The event is sponsored by The Mall in Columbia and Brookfield Properties and organized by Columbia Association’s International Exchange and Multicultural Programs.
The Performance Schedule is here.
For more information, please contact Laura Smit at 410-715-3162 or International@ColumbiaAssociation.org,
Discover the Flavors of France: Sister Cities Cuisine Class
April 12 at Elkridge Furnace Inn
Enjoy an evening of French cooking demonstrations followed by a three-course dinner with award-winning executive chef Dan Wecker at the historic Elkridge Furnace Inn. Learn to cook classic dishes of French cuisine and find out about Columbia’s French sister city, Cergy-Pontoise a relationship that dates back to 1977.
The French cooking class will be held on Friday, April 12 from 6-9 pm. The restaurant is located at 5745 Furnace Ave, Elkridge. The cost is $60, which includes cooking demonstrations, printed recipes, a full dinner and refreshments.
This French cooking class is the second in a series of five classes exploring the cuisine and cultures of Columbia’s sister cities. The first class explored Haitian cuisine. Look for classes on Chinese, Ghanaian and Spanish cooking later this year.
Registration is required.; click here to register. Detailed instructions to register are here. If you need help with registration or would like more information, please contact Grace Chang at Grace.Chang@ColumbiaAssociation.org or 410-715-3178.
World Languages Café
CA’s monthly World Languages Café offers free evenings of conversation and culture. It’s a place to practice speaking a language you know or are learning, converse in a friendly atmosphere, meet new people who enjoy learning about other cultures, increase your fluency by speaking and listening, pick up useful phrases to use when traveling and recall your childhood language.
World Languages Café is held once a month, year-round on the fourth Tuesday of the month from 7-9pm in the 50+ Center at the East Columbia Library, located at 6600 Cradlerock Way, Columbia 21045.
Come in and join the language table of your choice (indicated by signs on the tables). There is no need to RSVP. Language tables are hosted by a native or fluent speaker who will facilitate conversation. Languages include American Sign Language, Arabic, Chinese, Dutch, English, Farsi, French, German, Haitian Creole, Hebrew, Hindi, Irish Gaelic, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and Turkish.
Tea, coffee, and water are available. Participants and table hosts are welcome to bring food and beverages and may bring treats from their culture to share with their table. Children under the age of 13 should be accompanied by an adult.
To find out if there will be a native speaker of the language of your interest, to request that your email is added to the World Languages Café email group, or for more information, please contact Laura Smit at 410-715-3162 or International@ColumbiaAssociation.org. Click here for the flyer.
Africa CultureFest Celebrated the Cultures of the Continent of Africa
The Africa CultureFest, held October 14, 2018, at the Miller Branch of the Howard County Library System, celebrated 13 of the many countries and cultures on the continent: Algeria, Botswana, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Lesotho, Morocco, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, and South Africa.
The free community event, a collaboration between Columbia Association and the Howard County Library System, offered the community an afternoon of African displays, dance performances, music, activities for children, demonstrations and other cultural arts.
Click here for photos from the Africa CultureFest.
Performances included a participatory drum circle led by the Performing Arts Center for African Cultures, and dances by students from Howard Community College’s African Student Union as well as local Nigerian-American high school students. The African Art Museum of Maryland in Fulton brought a selection of pieces from their collection, representing many African cultures. There were also African arts and crafts vendors selling clothes, baskets, sculptures and other crafts, including King Peggy (Nana Amuah-Afenyi VI), African Inspired by Bora, Osun Connection and Kwame Tailor Clothing.
International Book Club
CA’s International Book Club meets monthly to explore multicultural and international themes. All books are selected by participants. Through a collaboration with Howard County Library, the book selections are reserved each month at the East Columbia branch. All books are in English.
Book discussions are held at 7:30 p.m. on the second Wednesday of the month at Columbia Association Headquarters, 6310 Hillside Court, Columbia. To see the the list of upcoming books, the list of books the International Book Club has read since 2010, and book suggestions made by members by area of the world, click here. To join the CA International Book Club Google group, please contact Laura Smit at International@
Past Multicultural Events:
|Oceania CultureFest||October 2017, click here for photos.|
|HaitiFest||January 2017, click here for photos|
|Central America and Mexico Culture Fest||October 2016, click here for photos|
|Eastern Europe and Russia Culture Fest||April 2016, click here for photos|
|Ghana Fest 2||November 2015, click here for photos|
|Western Europe Culture Fest||October 2015, click here for photos|
|South America Culture Fest||April 2015, click here for photos|
|Caribbean Culture Fest||September 2014, click here for photos|
|North Africa and Middle East Culture Fest||May 2014, click here for photos|
|The Art of Ghana Exhibition||May 2014, click here for photos|
|Ghana Fest||November 2013, click here for photos by Ron Fedorzak|
|South Asia Culture Café||November 2012, click here for photos|
|East Asia Culture Café||March 2012, click here for photos|