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Saturday, March 29, 2014

Food, dance, music at Zamora Temple at Alabama International Asian festival on March 29

Food, dance, music at Zamora Temple at Alabama International Asian festival on March 29

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama – The Alabama Asian Cultures Foundation is having its 2014 International festival at a new, larger location. It’s trying the new location as a possible fit for its new International Peace Plaza, Cultural Educational Center and in future a classical Chinese garden.

On Saturday, March 29, the annual Alabama Asian Cultures and Food Festival will be held at Zamora Shrine Temple, 3521 Ratliff Road, in Irondale.

The festivities start at 10:30 a.m. and close at 4 p.m., and include activities, performances, food, lectures and displays that are designed to spotlight the variety and depth of cultures throughout Asia. Formerly held at the Cedars Club, the new venue will allow visitors greater space for virtual excursions to Japan, China, Vietnam, Indonesia, India and Philippines.

Admission is $7 for adults, $4 for teens, veterans and college students with ID. Free for chidren 12 and under.

Here's what to expect:

DISPLAYS: Origami Peace Mobile of 20,000 cranes; Garden Model; Cultural Education booths from seven countries including India, Vietnam, Nepal, Indonesia and many others; National Geographic floor map.

FOOD VENDORS: Seven different countries represented, open 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Prepared plates, $8 (tokens) each. A la carte, soft drinks and tea available.


10:30 a.m.: Opening ceremony: Children's Chorus, remarks from visiting dignitaries and this year's Miss Birmingham Chelsea Yarber and Miss Cahaba Valley, Ellen Hardy.

11 a.m.: Ribbon cutting.

11-11:15 a.m.Matsuriza, Japanese Taiko drummers from Epcot Center at Walt Disney World.

11:25-11:45 a.m.Jasmine Dance Ensemble, Chinese dance troupe.

11:50 a.m.-12:05 p.m.Beast of the Bayou Vietnamese Dancers.

12:10-12:25 p.m.: Sanggar Tari Citra, Indonesian dances of Bali, Java and Sumatra.

12:30-12:35 p.m.Wendy Huang solo dance: “Miss You.”

12:40-12:55 p.m.Notinee, Indian classical-folk fusion dancers.

Notinee's Pia Sen
Notinee's Pia Sen

1:05-1:20 p.m.: Matsuriza Taiko drumming (encore).

1:30-1:35 p.m.: Gai Xuan Dance, Three Little Vietnamese Girls.

1:40-2 p.m.Natyananda, Classical dance of South India.
Natyananda's Sheila Rubin
Natyananda's Sheila Rubin

2:05-2:20 p.m.FAAGB Filipino Dancers, folk dance.

2:25-2:40 p.m.: Kathy Ren Group, martial arts presentation.

2:45-3 p.m.: Sanggar Tari Citra, Indonesian dances of Bali, Java and Sumatra.

3:10-3:25 p.m.: Matsuriza Taiko drumming (encore).

3:30-4 p.m.: Asian Fashion Show, Helen Kim, coordinator.


National Geographic Map Adventure, with Bo Garrett: Noon-12:45 p.m.; 1-1:45 p.m.; 2-2:45 p.m. Room D1 (limit 25)

The Way of Kong Fuzi (Confucius), with Kalanatha Mikal Keenan: 1-1:45 p.m. (Swami Kaal Nath); 2-3 p.m., Room 2 (limit 30)


See proposed sites at Zamora Temple: Peace and Friendship Plaza and classical Chinese garden, programs in the Asian Cultural Education Center. Leaves on the hour, Noon-3 p.m., starting in lobby area (limit 10 per group).

Zamora Shrine Temple is accessible from I-459 via Grants Mill Road exit (27), or I-20 via Old Leeds Road exit (135).

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