ISA and Kearney International Center to host Asian Fusion

The fun and festive Asian cultural celebration called “Asian Fusion,” which celebrates southern and eastern Asian cultures, will take place on Saturday, Nov. 5.

Cultural booths featuring educational material about different countries will be situated in the hearth lounge in the basement of the CSU. Dinner will be served in the flex space, also in the CSU basement. Both the cultural booths and dinner will start at 5 p.m., and entertainment in the CSU ballroom will begin at 7 p.m. Tickets are $8 in advance and $10 at the door, and can be bought online through a link on the Facebook page, facebook.com/msuasm.

The event is coordinated by the Kearney International Center and the International Student Organization (ISA). This is the second time Asian Night has been a consolidated event representing all Asian cultures, but individual countries have been holding their own nights for decades beforehand.

According to Tahir Farooqi, a graduate assistant at the International Center, “In the past, we had separate countries, but some students are only here for two or three years.”

Individual countries would hold their events every other year, so some students would miss out on the opportunity to represent their country.

A wide variety of traditional food, dancing, songs, and clothing will be shared by Asian students at the event. Eight countries will be mainly represented, which are: Bangladesh, China, India, Nepal, Korea, Japan, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.

At the cultural booths, international students dressed in traditional clothing will be sharing their culture, showing a map of their country, and pointing out their capital city. The clothing will include the kurta, which is worn by people of India and southern Asia. It is a long shirt that goes below the knees, with designs around the cuff or collar, and has a square or round bottom.

The responsibility for food has been split between the countries, so that two countries will be represented by appetizers, two countries will make four main dishes, and two more countries will make deserts.

According to Farooqi, Korea will present a dish that looks like a pancake, Japan is doing sushi, Nepal and Bangladesh are making a veggie and non-veggie rice dish, and India and Pakistan are crafting sweets. The Indian desert is a fried batter ball known as gulab jamun, and the Pakistani desert is ice cream kulfi. This year, there will be smaller portions, so a hungry person can try one of everything.

The entertainment will consist of half songs and half dances, focusing on traditional dancing and singing rather than American songs. There will be a fashion show at the end of the entertainment. Before the show in the CSU Ballroom, there will be a dancing dragon in the flex space to entertain the people eating.

Much can be learned from this cultural experience. One is able to learn about the cultures of specific countries, learn dances, try different foods, and even ask how the foods are made. It broadens the horizons of people and allows them to try new things. People are curious about the traditional dresses and have even asked where they can find one.

Jacy Fry, the director of ISSA, said, “I am excited for our students to share their culture with the Mankato community and let our community get to know them.”

By attending this event, one can travel to different and unique worlds without going anywhere. Asian Night is a great opportunity to become familiar with cultures across the large continent of Asia, on the other side of the world.

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