The Grand Rapids Asian-Pacific Festival aims to enrich Grand Rapids’ "cultural vibrancy." Photo via fb.com
A festival celebrating Asian culture will return to downtown Grand Rapids next week.
The second-annual Grand Rapids Asian-Pacific Festival, presented by the West Michigan Asian American Association, or WMAAA, and Old National Bank, will be held on June 9 at Rosa Parks Circle, at 135 Monroe Center St. NW, from 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.
The festival is part of GR Asian-Pacific Week, which runs June 4-9 and features events centered around Asian-Pacific businesses in the Grand Rapids area.
GR-Asian Pacific Week is sponsored by Downtown Grand Rapids Inc. and Old National Bank.
The Grand Rapids Asian-Pacific Festival is meant to “inspire, educate and celebrate our Asian roots,” as well as connect people and “provide resources and ways to help each other,” according to organizers.
— Food vendors offering dishes from a variety of Asian countries
— Lion dances
— Martial art demonstrations
— Fashion show featuring traditional attire
— Traditional and modern performances, including "Naruto" singers from New York
— Children’s activities, including sidewalk drawings and paper dragon making
— Luau hour
— India immersion hour
— Appearance by three sumo wrestling champions, Yama, Byamba and Takeshi
— Dance and party with Ace Marasigan DJ Entertainment and DJ Bobolai to close the night
— Beer tent selling local and Asian beer
West Michigan Asian American Association
WMAAA is a Grand Rapids-based nonprofit that seeks to build a collaborative, active and committed Asian-American community in West Michigan. Its focus areas include health care, education and civic engagement.
WMAAA offers various programs and activities: scholarships; networking events; presentations and performances that promote appreciation for Asian culture; speaking engagements that promote greater awareness of health care issues affecting the Asian-American community; a patient navigation system; and more.
Old National Bank
Old National Bank, founded in 1834, is headquartered in Evansville, Indiana and has $17.5 billion in assets.
Its footprint includes Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota.