Chattanooga State Partners With Chattanooga Market, Arts Build, City And County To Host 14th Annual CultureFest

Thursday, September 26, 2013
The Chattanooga Market, Arts Build, Hamilton County and the City of Chattanooga in partnership with ChattState’s International Community Outreach Office (ICOO) will co-host Chattanooga’s 14th annual CultureFest, the area’s premiere showcase of international communities and largest annual celebration of local cultures. 

More than 10,000 people are expected to attend the event, which will take place on Sunday, Oct. 6 from 11 a.m.–4 p.m. at the First Tennessee Pavilion. Admission is free.

Featured activities and entertainment will include live performances from local cultural groups, a Parade of Nations, a multicultural fashion show, a dance contest and an exhibition of culturally themed art. Additional opportunities to learn about other cultures will be presented at display booths coordinated by ChattState’s Cultural Ambassadors and International Achievers organization (CAIA). A sampling of cultural foods from various countries will be offered periodically throughout the day.

“As part of our guiding efforts to bridge cultural differences and cultivate a high quality of life for international people in Chattanooga, the International Community Outreach Office is proud to partner with the Chattanooga Market, City, County and ArtsBuild in celebrating the many vibrant communities of culture in our area,” said Gladys Pineda-Loher, ICOO director. “We view CultureFest as an excellent opportunity to promote our most recent initiative: Cultural Ambassadors and International Achievers, a network comprised of local business leaders, organizations and communities together to learn about what makes each of our cultures distinctive while celebrating the lives we all share here in Chattanooga.”

An art competition at CultureFest supported by ChattState, several corporate sponsors and other partners will be providing prizes for outstanding candidates in the following categories:
        Best visual art piece
        Best delegation in the Parade of Nations
        Best cultural display booth
        Most authentic dress in the multicultural fashion show
        Best cultural performance

“ArtsBuild passionately believes that the arts are for all,” said Dan Bowers, president of Arts Build. “We are very pleased to be a part of CultureFest and celebrate our community’s rich diversity through arts and culture.”

During the opening ceremony kickoff, local government will present a proclamation celebrating newly established initiatives of the CAIA organization. More than 200 local education and workforce development leaders, speaking 30 languages and representing 50 countries will be in attendance. These leaders will help assist in the development of service projects and a new cultural calendar, while serving as translation and cultural etiquette resources to community leaders working to promote regional economic development.

CultureFest attendees will have the opportunity to meet with representatives of CAIA that are joining Chattanooga State, the city, county and ArtsBuild in its efforts to create opportunity and bridges of understanding in the region.

“As an organization devoted to enhancing local life and small business development, the Chattanooga Market is delighted to collaborate with Chattanooga State, the city and county in celebrating the diverse cultures that so deeply enrich our area,” said Christ Thomas, executive director of the Chattanooga Market. “We expect Chattanooga’s 14th annual CultureFest to be a very memorable occasion, and we’re looking forward to providing the venue and working with our partners to bring this event to the community.”

To reserve a booth at the event, please contact For more information about cultural displays or the Cultural Ambassadors and International Achievers of Chattanooga State, contact Gladys Pineda-Loher at 423 697-3204 or

Events at the EPB Stage and Plaza Stage (inside and outside):

Opening remarks and presentation of Proclamation by local government

Recognition of “Cultural Ambassadors and International Achievers” 

Parade of Nations

Multicultural fashion show

Mexican Performance

Belly dance performances

Native American performance

Costa Rican performance 

Filipino performance

Peruvian performance

Colombian performance

Indian performance 

Cuban performance

African dance and drumming

African-American dance 

Native American

Exposition of local international painters and artists with visual art focus on cultural diversity

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