For six years now in April, the Mall of America in Bloomington, MN has hosted "A Passage to China," a 2-day festival put on by Minnesota's Chinese Heritage Foundation and local newspaper China Insight. This year's festival involved over 45 organizations & businesses - some there to sell merchandise, others to talk about programs they put on, and others to grow membership.
There were demonstrations of cooking, dance, martial arts, singing, painting, calligraphy, and many other crafts - kids received a "passport" and would get a stamp at each booth they visited, then redeem the stamps for a necklace or bracelet.
It was great to see so many Asian faces and hear so much Mandarin in one place here in Minnesota - and it was heartening to see so many non-Asian faces watching the performances with interest and walking through the booths with their kids!
My dear daughter had a fine time, of course. Now that she's a little bit older and able to speak in Chinese for herself, she got a lot more out of this year's presentation:
|Having the Starbucks in the background makes it more authentically Chinese ;)|
|Moulding-your-own Terracotta Warriors|
|Little Warriors for sale... we're holding out to get a life-size one for the garden in the backyard|
|We stayed for a number of vocal performances and dance numbers|
|Paper-cutting, a traditional folk craft from Shaanxi province - it can get amazingly intricate. (She did not pay any attention to the American Girl shop just beyond :) )|