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Multi-cultural festival in Springfield, Ohio


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    Dayton (Ohio): The 11th Annual CultureFest of Springfield(Ohio) served up music, dancing, food, information and activities from around the globe. At Culture Fest the choices included Mexican, Greek and Italian foods; bluegrass, jazz and Andean music; and African, Indian and Celtic dancers. Punjabis living in Dayton and Springfield area celebrated this song and dance festival by exhibiting Gidha and Bhangra in which Swaran Kaur,Karanvir Singh, Manpreet Singh, Ravjot Kaur, Sarabjit Kaur, Navdeep Kaur, Rajdeep Kaur, Navpreet Singh, Gurinder Singh, Lakhwinder Singh, Avtar singh,Charanjit Singh Gumtala participated. The onlookers were so impressed with the Bhangra and Gidha display that they could not resist themselves in joining with the Punjabis at the rhythm of the Dhol .

    Various stalls were organized by different communities such as Mexican, African, Celtic, Chinese, Indian, Italian, and Greeks. On the Indian stall Punjabi artifacts such as spinning wheel (Charkha), churner(Madhani), seat chair (Peerhee), grinding stone(Atta chaki), harmonium, hand drum(Damru), Punjabi Tong (Chimta) were displayed. To create awareness of the turban in context of Indian culture, pictures of Dr.Manmohan Singh Prime Minister of India along with American President George W.Bush and also the Sikh soldiers wearing turbans who took part in World War I were displayed. Pictures of Golden Temple and Sri Guru Granth Sahib were also displayed and explained their significance .Balbir Singh Cheema, Gurmeet Kaur Cheema,Sameep Singh, Piara Singh Sembhi, Rajpal Singh Bajaj, Kartar Singh, Jaswant Singh Grewal, Daljit Singh Deol, Charanjit Kaur, Harjit Kaur, Kanwar Pal Singh also participated in various activities organized by the Indian community.

    According to Chris Moore member of the Steering Committee "All races come together down here and have fun,", Sisters and WittenbergUniversity students Katie and Emily Beavers joined in with the Karanvir Singh Indian dancing group.

    "It looked like so much fun, and they were so friendly," Katie Beavers said. Mayor Copeland inaugurated the festival and praised Gidha and Bhangha. Police chief .Steve Moody, Sherriff .Gene Kelly, Interfaith Director .Charlie Bush were also present .Americans enjoyed Punjabi food from Jeet India .

    - By Charanjit Singh Gumtala
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