Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Event Analysis

Hillary Schrum

This past weekend I was reminded of the diverse, exhilarating, and wonderful country we live in. While attending Fells Point Fun Festival at Fells Point, the renowned historic colonial marine area in Baltimore City, I realized the conglomeration of diverse people present at this festival in Baltimore symbolized what America stands for. The assortment of people represented there made me realize how much this country is a true “melting pot”.

After being at Loyola for a little over a month, I felt that I had not truly experienced the cultural aspects of Baltimore. Coming from a very small town in Pennsylvania has only allowed me to see a homogenous group of people. I am not familiar with diverse areas because of having lived in the same town my whole life. I decided Fells Fun Festival would be a great opportunity to see the different people in the city of Baltimore and the various cultures represented here.
As I arrived at the festival I was immediately overwhelmed with the gigantic crowd over flooding the area. What seemed like millions turned out to be about 400,000 people of all different cultures, ages, sexualities, and religions. My initial response to walking into a festival is asking where the food is. This was not the typical festival food though. About eighty different vendors supplied every food imaginable, from Mexican food and Middle Eastern Food to a stand where you could make your own lemonade. The mixture of delicious aromas thrilled me and left my stomach begging me to eat something soon.

After finally making the difficult decision of what to eat, I sat down at a picnic table to eat my Mediterranean rice bowl. Just as I began eating, noises of steel drums began to take over my thoughts. My friend and I quickly turned around to see a Jamaican band along side of reggae dancers. I engaged in conversation with the gay couple next to me and continued to eat my lunch as I was completely intrigued with the energetic performance.

Soon I decided to check out the different vendors representing themselves at the festival. I came across a stand that had beautiful African jewelry. The worker informed me that the money made from the sales helps with education in parts of Africa. I purchased the unique bracelets that caught my eye immediately, and felt good that I had made some type of donation. I also bought a gorgeous rosary from the Hispanic vendor for my mom to add to her collection. After about four hours of entertainment, food, shopping, and my friend taking salsa lessons, it was time to head back to Loyola.

The stimulating experience introduced me to the assortment of people in Baltimore. More importantly, it was a representation of the colorful nation we live in. Having read “Ode to American English” and attending this festival in the past week, I got a refreshing reminder of our exceptional country which we live in, and lastly, a glimpse into the city of Baltimore.

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