The beloved MICDS International Expo returned last week with great fanfare and excitement. We haven’t been able to host an Expo in a while due to the pandemic, and we were ready to once again celebrate and share the MICDS community’s cultural knowledge and diversity by embracing all with compassion, respect, and dignity.
The event kicked off with a festive Parade of Nations in Brauer Auditorium. Student ambassadors flooded the stage dressed in costumes and waving flags. Then several talented Upper School students began the program with a vibrant Chinese Lion Dance. Middle and Upper School students also sang, danced, and played musical instruments before an appreciative audience.
The night was just getting started! After the cultural performances, guests streamed over to the North Gym, where our parent and student ambassadors had displays and food representing 25 countries and St. Louis, Missouri. From Argentina to Zambia, visitors were able to travel around the world in a few hours. Did you know that pato is Spanish for “duck” because in Argentina’s national sport, Pato, which is similar to polo, a live duck was originally used instead of a ball? Or that Bulgaria is the oldest country in Europe that hasn’t changed its name since it was first established? Or that in France, Époisses de Bourgogne, often called “the world’s smelliest cheese,” is so stinky that it is banned on public transportation? The “fortune cookie” was first made by a Japanese person and is not even found in China. Ireland is the only country where the windmills turn clockwise. Morocco’s city of Fez is the location of the world’s first university, University of al-Qarawiyyin, founded in 859.
The gym was bursting with energy as people shared their cultures and beliefs, and delicious food. Empanadas from Argentina, a full Indian box dinner, vegemite from Australia, tea from Nigeria, and much more…our tastebuds also went around the world!
A stage at one end of the gym showcased interactive cultural performances by Upper School students and professional dancers and musicians, including a Bollywood dance lesson, Salsa dance demonstration and lesson, the St. Louis Okinawa Eisa Group, and a Senegalese Mbalax dance lesson by Coumba Gueye.
Event organizers asked our cultural ambassadors to share music for a Spotify playlist. Enjoy a variety of music from around the globe!
Thank you to all our parade participants, cultural show performers, ambassadors, Upper School International Council, and all parent, faculty, staff, and student volunteers who put in their time and talent to make the 2022 International Expo a successful event.
If you are interested in welcoming newcomers and immigrants to St. Louis, learn how to become a St. Louis Mosaic Ambassador by visiting www.StlMosaicProject.org.