February 02, 2009

Taste of Nations offers foreign food, fun

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- In celebration of the international diversity at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, University Housing and Chi Alpha Campus Ministry are presenting a series of special events and dining experiences each Wednesday in February.

Taste of Nations 2009 offers a chance to encounter the food, customs, ceremonial costumes, music and artifacts of several of the world’s cultures. From the beat of African drums to the strumming of a Japanese guitarist and nimbleness of Chinese stick dancers -- it’s all there.

The event starts at 4 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 4 in Lentz Dining Hall, and runs until 7 p.m. Students can sample cuisine from Latin America, China, Japan, Africa, Korea and India as they view the international artifacts and native costumes with a backdrop of eclectic international music.

The fun continues from 4 to 7 p.m. on Feb. 11 at University Hall. Students can enjoy music, foods, costumes and other items from China that day.

Eastside Express at Grinnell Hall in Brush Towers is the venue for the Feb. 18 fest. African students will play drums as students enjoy snacks from various countries and view international native costumes and artifacts from 7 to 11 p.m.

Wrapping up the Taste of Nations is the 4 to 7 p.m. Feb. 25 gathering at Trueblood Hall. Chinese and Japanese music as well as African drum music is on the menu, along with foods. Again, you can check out native costumes and international artifacts spanning the globe.

India, Japan, Korea, China, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Honduras, Mexico, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Kenya, Togo and Nigeria all are represented in the month-long event. It’s all free and provides a unique glimpse of the world outside of the United States, courtesy of University Housing/Residence Hall Dining and Chi Alpha Campus Ministry. Chi Alpha is an international and American campus ministry and a SIUC registered student organization since 1970.