UNC Charlotte’s International Festival enables the greater Charlotte community to experience cultural traditions and foods from around the world. New for this year’s 44th annual festival, Opera Carolina will perform, and the Charlotte Independence soccer team will give demonstrations.
The International Festival is the University’s longest-running cultural event, and the 2019 installment is set for 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 21, in and around the Barnhardt Student Activity Center.
Starting at 11 a.m., Opera Carolina will present well-known arias from works representing countries around the world. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Charlotte Independence team members will be in the festival Game Zone; stop by to watch soccer demonstrations and pick up team memorabilia.
In addition to these special events, the International Festival, which attracts thousands of attendees yearly, will offer the sights, sounds and tastes of 50 countries and cultures. Also, there will be the regular parade of nations, dancers and other performers. Visitors should plan to spend several hours, or even the entire day, wandering through tents of brightly colored displays; conversing with participants who are representing their countries and cultures; tasting authentic cuisine from around the world; and soaking up the atmosphere of song, dance and story.
The UNC Charlotte Office of International Programs coordinates the International Festival with support from several campus and community partners including Chartwells Dining Services; Cone University Center; Division of Business Affairs; Office of Identity, Equity and Engagement; Student Involvement; and the James H. Barnhardt Student Activity Center.
Special thanks this year goes to the Arts & Science Council for awarding International Programs a Cultural Vision Grant to support the festival.
Admission and parking are free; the International Festival will be held rain or shine.