The Flagstaff melting pot will soon bubble over in celebration of culture and diversity during the Flagstaff International Festival, Oct. 30 through Nov. 4. A number of activities are planned throughout the city to bring together a variety of cultures from the NAU and Flagstaff communities through international dinners, cultural entertainment, exhibits, films and music.

“Internationalization is such a hot topic,” saidStephen Wright, director of the NAU Center for International Education. “Sometimes it is hard to expose the community to international experiences in a small area like ours, so we are trying to bring the world to Flagstaff.”

Hundreds of people are expected to take part in this year’s event, said Sheila Anders, business manager in the center and chair of the committee planning the festival. “Our goal is to solidify the links between the strong international presence on campus and within the community.”

The festival kicks off at 1 p.m. Oct. 30 at NAU’s newly renovated Center for International Education (Tinsley Hall, building 44, room 102) as Flagstaff Mayor Joe Donaldson will proclaim it to be International Week. That evening, festival-goers can get their fill of cuisine from around the world at the International Feast and Celebration in the University Union, building 30.

Throughout the week, participants can experience the vibrant cultures represented at Northern Arizona University and the Flagstaff community through lectures, films and social activities. The festival will culminate with the International Festival Gala at NAU’s du Bois Center Ballroom on Nov. 4, featuring a full day of free activities, including dance and music performances, cultural activities, an international arts and crafts display and sale, and world cuisine.

The festival is a collaboration among Northern Arizona University, the Northern Arizona Celtic Heritage Society, the Flagstaff Italian American Club and Flagstaff Sister Cities International.

A complete schedule for the week is available online, or contact Sheila Anders, (928) 523-2409.