News Column

The Seattle Times Weekend Highlight column

October 31, 2013

YellowBrix

Oct. 31--Music and crafts from around the world fill Bellevue's Cultural Crossroads Festival this weekend, the 23rd year for the popular event produced by the Ethnic Heritage Council. The free event features world music and dance performances, Cultural Crossroads Marketplace vendors, and displays including 130 "Dolls of the World" in ethnic dress. "It's like a mini-Folklife with music and dancing from so many cultures all in one place," says Heritage Council Executive Director Alma Plancich.

Entertainment kicks off the event Friday evening on the Market Music Stage in the Crossroads Public Market international food court, featuring free tango lessons and music by the Rouge & Noir Tango Orchestra 6:30-9 p.m.; and the Marketplace, 20 vendors with crafts and imports from Africa, Asia, Europe, South and North America, open festival hours Friday through Sunday.

Performances on the Market Music Stage and the Dance Stage in Crossroad's south concourse Saturday include Zaphara's Middle Eastern Dancers, Dave and the Dalmatians songs from Croatia, New Age Flamenco, Bulgarian Voices of Seattle Women's Choir, Kabuki Academy Japanese dance and music and German Bavarian folk dances by Enzian Schuhplattler. Sunday includes music, dance and stories from Ghana, West Africa by Ocheami, Haan Dei I Jin (Take My Hand) traditional Alaskan Tlingit singing, dancing and drumming, Show Brazil!, and folk and modern Chinese dance by Melody Dance Group. Many performers are returning favorites, with new performers this year including local Russian and Romanian community groups.

Activities for kids of all ages include a display of Lego models representing many cultures and, from noon-4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, hands-on Lego play. All events are free.

Madeline McKenzie: mmckenzie@seattletimes.com

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