February 11, 2010

International Festival set for Feb. 17-19

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- The International Festival 2010 at Southern Illinois University Carbondale is a celebration of the diversity that is SIUC.

From opening ceremonies on Feb. 17 to the buffet and cultural show Feb. 19, it’s all happening at the Student Center. Throughout the festival, the International Student Council will be accepting donations on behalf of the American Red Cross to assist earthquake relief efforts in Haiti.

The activities begin with the Campus Processional at 10 a.m. Wednesday, Feb. 17, starting at Anthony Hall and concluding at the John W. Corker Lounger in the Student Center. Ceremonies featuring a University welcome and city and campus proclamations follow at 10:30 a.m.

The ever-popular Food Fair begins at 11 a.m. that day in the ballrooms. Students from 13 countries will prepare and serve some of their favorite international cuisine and everyone is welcome to attend. Advance tickets are 50 cents each and will go on sale beginning about 10 a.m. Feb. 15 in the north escalator area on the first floor of the Student Center. You can enjoy the eclectic selection of dishes are typically priced at two to four tickets per serving. You can also purchase tickets at the door the day of the Food Fair.

That evening, the international flair continues with a free Bollywood film at 7 p.m. From the Hindi film and music industry comes this romantic tale of Hindustan (now known as India) emperor Jalaluddin Mohammad Akbar and his young Rajput princess, Jodhaa.

The acclaimed Irish band The Dorians will perform in the Roman Room Feb. 18 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. As the free Noon Tunes concert runs, The Market Place will feature a special selection of Irish cuisine from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Capping off the 2010 International Festival on Friday, Feb. 19, is the International Buffet and Cultural Show. Student Center Dining offers the International Buffet from 5 to 7 p.m. in the Renaissance Room on the first floor of the Student Center. Appetizers include antipasto (Italy), baked cherry tomato and feta with crusty bread (Greece), and hummus with tahini and warm pita (Lebanon). Salads include chilled soba noodles with tofu and spicy vegetables (Japan), cucumber kimchi (Korea) and lemon and herb tabbouleh (Middle East).

Soups include vichyssoise (France) and tortillas with chicken and chilies (Mexico), while entrees include the Nuevo Latin beef chiquiles and Indian tandoori style roast chicken. The side dishes include gado gado with chilies and tofu (Indonesia), ginger and garlic green beans with goma (Asia), Spanish white beans with spinach and sun dried tomatoes (Spain) and sweet chili fried rice (Thailand). Breads are Irish soda bread and French Gorgonzola and onion bread.

Of course, no feast is complete without the desserts. There’s cinnamon dusted churros (Mexico), Sacher torte (Austria/France) and blatterteig apfel strudel (Germany).

If purchased in advance, tickets are $13 for the general public, $12 for SIUC students and senior citizens and $6.75 for children ages 5-10 years. At the door, tickets are $1 more. You can buy tickets now at the Central Ticket Office on the second floor of the Student Center from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday or by calling 618/453-3478.

The International Cultural Show at 7 p.m. in the ballrooms features song, dance, fashion, performing arts and much more as international students showcase their cultures. The event is free and open to the public.

The International Student Council and Student Center Special Programs and Events are coordinators for the 2010 International Festival. For more information, visit the Student Center Web site at www.siucstudentcenter.org or call 618/453-1142.