Culture means different things to different people. For some it will be about heritage and respecting views and values of the past, for others it will be a way to live now- manners, refinement and activities that are enjoyed. As the United States has so many people with backgrounds from all over the world, cultural festivals will be very varied. Research has shown that there are at least 72 cultural festivals held in the United States each year.
2013 should see many interesting events unfold since it was announced that this was “The Year of Italian Culture.” Americans can expect to see events dedicated to eminent Italians dating as far back as Michelangelo and going through to the latest artists and scientists. Many cultural festivals will follow this format and be a way to show the pride people have in their ancestry.
Festivals dedicated to a nation will clearly be supported by those with the appropriate background, but the culture will have reached many others who will see the benefits of attending cultural festivals. The love of opera or country music, modern art or American Indian jewellery stretches way beyond the boundaries of where you were born and what your nationality is listed as on your passport.
Most of the festivals held each year are dedicated to individual cultures, but some encompass the country as a whole. One such event is the How Weird Street Faire, which is presented as a celebration of peace and funds raised are presented to the World Peace through Technology Organization. Participants turn up in costume and booths provide information on various ways the world should aim for peace.
Not all cultural festivals will have such a wide ranging theme as the peace festival and some will be to show how certain sections of society live an example being the Armish Arts and Crafts Festival. Cultural festivals do not have to be about being high brow and elitist, but can be based on the old ways of life and a more simple way of living.
The success of cultural festivals will depend on a number of things ranging from the location to the events involved to the fee charged. For some a true cultural festival will be priced so as to exclude many, but others see a free or low fee system as the way to make an event successful. For people who consider culture to be based on exclusivity the former will be the sort of events they attend the latter will be well avoided. For the people who see festivals as a way to bring people together and allow them to absorb other cultures, the latter will be the perfect solution.
Whatever the view on culture, The United States will have a suitable festival.