Growth, accessibility, and safety prompt change in venue.
HARRISONBURG (July 10, 2018) — The Harrisonburg International Festival Planning Committee announced today that Harrisonburg City Council has approved relocation of the annual event to downtown Harrisonburg. Previously held in Harrisonburg’s Hillandale Park, the festival’s popularity and growth has prompted the relocation. Organizers believe this change in venue will not only enhance the festival by offering more space and safety for participants, but that accessibility to downtown’s amenities and strong partnerships with Harrisonburg Parks & Recreation, Harrisonburg Tourism, Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance, Harrisonburg Police and Fire Departments, and Harrisonburg Public Works will make the event even more vibrant in coming years.
“The move to downtown will provide festival participants with even more opportunities to sample the rich multicultural landscape that Harrisonburg offers. Our wealth of international entrepreneurs, businesses, and organizations is unmatched in the Shenandoah Valley, and this festival is the perfect chance to get a taste of amazing international food and entertainment and meet the wonderful people that contribute so much to this community,” said Brenda Black, Harrisonburg Tourism and Visitor Services Manager.
This year’s event is scheduled for Saturday, September 29th, 2018 from 12 – 6 pm, and features international music, dance, food, artists, storytelling, and family-friendly activities for all ages. Now in its 21st year, the festival started as a grassroots effort to showcase and unite the city’s various international populations, celebrate the cultural and linguistic richness they bring to the region, and provide greater understanding within the overall community. Now one of Harrisonburg’s most recognizable and well-loved community events, the festival attracted more than 9,000 attendees in 2017 and was voted “Best Festival/Event” in the Daily News-Record’s Best of the Valley 2018 readers’ poll.
The Festival is a program of the Civic Engagement branch of Harrisonburg’s FairField Center. Founded in 1982 and originally known as the Community Mediation Center, the FairField Center was the first mediation program established in Virginia. Since its inception, FairField Center has served a cross-section of Virginia’s population, providing not only interpersonal mediation services, but also restorative justice programs and facilitation and training to resolve conflicts and enhance communication and joint decision-making for schools, businesses, organizations, and communities-at-large.
For more information and sponsorship opportunities, visit www.harrisonburg-international-festival.org.