The 2013 Hodges University Diversity Festival will return to the Sugden Regional Park in Naples on February 23. The Festival, which runs from 12 pm – 6 pm, will bring together a broad array of vendors, entertainers and local artisans representing the cultural diversity of the Naples and Ft. Myers communities.
The Festival will feature local high school marching bands, drummers, singers and dance performers from our diverse communities; an arts and crafts area, as well as a Fine Art gallery and several multi-cultural heritage exhibits.
Local restaurants will provide a vast array of multi-cultural food samples for a small fee, and for the fifth consecutive year, the “Parade of Nations” will be the event’s highlight, highlighting clothing and fashions from around the world, providing historical information regarding the clothes worn in different countries.
Now in its sixth year, the Diversity Festival is an outreach of the Hodges University Diversity Committee, chaired by Gail Williams, Chief Diversity Officer at Hodges University. The Committee strives to increase awareness of cultural diversity among Hodges University students, faculty, and staff, and creates opportunities for diversity education and dialogue among members of the Hodges community.
“The theme for the festival is ‘Embrace Diversity, Empower Our World,’” said Williams. “It reflects our commitment to the Hodges University Diversity Initiative, which is a comprehensive, campus-wide endeavor devoted to enhancing and promoting diversity and inclusion at Hodges University via the development and implementation of school-wide programs related to diversity.
“Our major focus is to build bridges to the larger community and to work with groups to bring a wider and more highlighted focus to the experience of diversity and inclusion. Diversity is the one true thing we all have in common, and we celebrate it every day. The festival is an excellent way we at Hodges can create a space for members of the public to celebrate diversity with us.”
Sugden Regional Park offers many amenities for guests to enjoy during the festival, including a beach open to swimming, an open play area, a sand volleyball court, a 60-mile lake with two fishing piers, paddleboats, kayaks and more. Sugden Regional Park is located at 4284 Avalon Dr., Naples.
For more information on the Diversity Festival or the HU Diversity Committee, please contact Gail Williams at (239) 598-6135 or[email protected].