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Watford Celebration 2009

June 11, 2009

Celebration 2The sight of a stage full of swirling Spanish ladies in their multi-coloured frilled dresses, stamping out the rhythm of their traditional music was reminiscent of the Flower Dance from Disney’s Fantasia. This glorious sight was one of many that feasted the senses of those that attended this year’s Celebration event on Bank Holiday Monday at Watford Colosseum.

Other sights and sounds on the Colosseum’s vast stage were three large choirs, a rock band, a school band, dance groups, Hindu bhajans and a martial arts demonstration.

Celebration foodThe smell of foods of all nations was prevalent too, as the Watford Chinese Association with the help of the WRVS brought together foods from Japan, Poland, India, China, Pakistan, England and the Lebanon for a taster. Women’s groups provided cakes and drinks.

Stalls in the hall represented various countries, social, interest and health groups, services, charities and faith communities. The children had plenty to do, as there was an award winning face painter, a balloon modelling man, a craft table and a pre-school area where children could glue and colour to their heart’s delight, and for children of ALL ages, a model railway layout.

The faith communities were able to get together in a quiet area where they could exchange ideas and beliefs and also demonstrate something of their customs as some chanted, sang hymns, told beads and sang the call to prayer.

Celebration gregWatford Interfaith Association and the Police Community Engagement Officers had collaborated to organise an art competition between several secondary schools on Watford. The work was displayed in the foyer and the prizes were due to be presented by Mayor Dorothy Thornhill. Unfortunately her hand was bitten by a dog and she was in hospital at this time. We hope she recovers very quickly from this. Richard Chewter, town centre chaplain made the presentations instead.

3582413680_b2fe05d9ccThe aim of Celebration is to bring together all the diverse cultures and talents of the Watford area, and for it to be free for all. For more information, please go to: www.watfordcelebration.org. To this end, sponsorship has been essential and thanks go to St Michael’s Catholic High School for their very generous input and great support, also Watford Borough Council through Mayor Dorothy Thornhill who has also been a great support, and we also thank all our other generous sponsors. Around 3,000 people attended the event and there were many happy smiling faces.

By Judith Bruni

Click here to view all photos from the event
Thanks to Christophe Murphy for access to his flickr site.

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