Annual Cultural Festival, March 6-15

Slam Poet, Film Screening, and Nulhegan Abenaki Drummers Featured

February 27, 2014

Lyndon State College kicks off its 18th Annual Cultural Festival on March 6. The Festival, a campus-wide event traditionally held during the second and third weeks of March, is an opportunity for LSC to celebrate diversity and enjoy activities from a broad range of cultures. This year’s festival runs from March 6–15.

Slam poet Carlos Andrés Gómez, an award-winning poet, actor, and writer, performs on Thursday, March 6. He is the author of the 2012 coming-of-age memoir Man Up: Reimagining Modern Manhood. Gómez was nominated for the Pushcart Prize and named Artist of the Year at the 2009 Promoting Outstanding Writers Awards. He costarred in Spike Lee’s Inside Man with Denzel Washington and Jodie Foster and appeared in the sixth season of HBO’s Russell Simmons Presents Def Poetry. Gómez will perform at 9 p.m., in the Moore Community Room/Academic Student and Activity Center (ASAC) Room 100. The event is free and open to the public and is sponsored by the Campus Activity Board (CAB) as part of the Arts and Lecture series.

March 13 opens with a Peace Corps presentation by LSC Professor Thom Anderson. Anderson served in the Peace Corps from 1991 to 1995 in Morocco working to establish a National Park to protect the endangered Barbary sheep. He implemented solar ovens and fuel efficient cook stoves to help reduce the amount of wood used for cooking and heating to help stem the effects of deforestation, desertification, and soil erosion. Anderson’s talk is at 11 a.m. in Library and Academic Center Room 412.

Later that day, Fulbright Scholar and LSC Professor Margaret Sheerer will present highlights of living and working in Kerala, India—particularly as experienced by a woman—in light of the highly-publicized sexual assaults and other forms of violence against girls and women. Sherrer’s talk is at 12:30 in Vail 403.

Thursday ends with a 6 p.m. screening—in association with Vermont Public Television—of the documentary American Promise, winner of the 2013 Sundance Film Festival’s Special Jury Award. The film documents 13 years in the lives of two African-American families as they pursue the promise of opportunity through the education of their sons. Joe Brewster and Michèle Stephenson filmed their son, Idris, and his best friend, Seun, as they made their way through a prestigious private school. The film presents complicated truths about America’s struggle on issues of race, class and opportunity. The film will be screened in the Rita Bole Community Room and is free and open to the public. Following the film, a panel of racial justice activists including Sha’an Mouliert, Noah Fink, Penny Patch, and Paul Marcus, will respond to the film and lead audience discussion. Contact Pat Shine at 802 626-6252 or patricia.shine@lyndonstate.edu with any questions about the screening.

The festival week culminates Saturday, March 15 with The Nulhegan Abenaki Drummers: Honoring Veterans in Song and Spirit. The drummers combine traditional northeastern music with the sound of the big powwow style drum. Held in conjunction with the college’s 2nd annual Veterans Summit, the drummers—many of them veterans—will take the Alexander Twilight Theatre stage at 3 p.m. “The Nulhegan people have occupied the NEK and surrounding areas for thousands of years under various tribal leaders,” according to Chief Don Stevens. “We drum for ourselves and invite others to listen. Whenever we drum, we always honor our veterans and their families. There are special songs for veterans and special protocols we observe. When we do certain veterans songs, we ask that people refrain from pictures and video—we will announce it beforehand. This is done so that the souls of those departed will not be captured and trapped in the image.” The event is free and open to the public.

The annual Cultural Festival, created and coordinated by LSC Professor Lori Werdenschlag, presents a broad variety of performances and events again this year. The NEK Veterans Summit; a rail jam; lectures on the intersection of Mayan culture, calendars, and mathematics; and an international food court round out the offerings.

» Complete Cultural Festival Schedule

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