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Taste of Nations returning to mall this Saturday

Published 10:26am Thursday, April 11, 2013

Nations will come together Saturday at Oak Park Mall.

The fourth annual Taste of Nations will bring together people, food and cultures representing more than 40 countries from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday.

“There’s going to be a bunch of different groups that haven’t been there before,” said Jake Vela, executive director of the Welcome Center of Austin.

Vela said the event will bring together people in several new ways this year.

A Sudanese performance group will showcase the music and dance of that African region, and Vela said there’s going to be an increased African an European presence at this year’s Taste of Nations. There will also be gymnastics and Zumba demonstrations.

Also, there will be several events for children, including a children’s yoga class held by the Yoga Studio of Austin and coloring activities at the Austin Human Rights Commission booth.

Local nonprofits like Vision 2020 and other groups will be on hand to let people know how to get involved in the community.

Most of all, there will be plenty of food and drink from many countries, which will allow for a lot of interesting discussion. After all, the idea behind Taste of Nations is to get people to connect through food, according to Vela.

“The whole purpose is to bring people together,” he said. “It’s just a great way to break the ice, come out, learn who your neighbors are.”

The event is free to the public, but Taste of Nations organizers will take freewill donations to support local nonprofits. This year, any donations given at the Taste of Nations registration table will go to NAATH, a Sudanese advocacy group.

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