Multicultural Fair: Empowering Communities, Quilting Stories

By Mary Marques RSS Tue, November 5, 2019

Sharing cross-cultural stories is so important to developing civic engagement and participation in our communities. Creating safe environments is essential to discovering, exploring, and learning about our neighbors. We all share a set of collective stories about our families, cultures, and love for our traditions. Learning what is important to us will open the door for growth and cultural understanding. The Free Library's Multicultural Fair will aim to provide a venue for exchanging and quilting stories in our journey together.

An Emergent Idea
“Turning Outward” is a phrase that has been resonating in our professional library environment for quite some time during our in-house monthly trainings. Library staff are encouraged to follow the mission of the Free Library by advancing literacy, guiding learning, and inspiring curiosity. Library staff are more creative in developing programs and services with the purpose and the intention of lifting the community as a whole. The Professional Development Training: Skills for Community-Centered Libraries intends to provide the tools to engage in a two-way dialog; in addition to building “community capacity” and encouraging, more than ever, active participation from all community members. This Multicultural Fair Project was an emergent collective idea, from library staff and community leaders, to promote Cultural Civic Engagement in our community.

Yes! Getting together!
Identifying common objectives is pivotal in developing a meaningful and trusting relationship. During the two-month planning process, community partners, community members, and library staff shared their vision of the project and the potential resources that could be shared at this event. We all agreed that providing a cultural venue for exchanging information is a good platform to learn and explore what is available in our communities. Sharing a collective mission and vision is a great way to align end results and expectations.

Emilie Parker, Director of Education at The Rosenbach states: “The Rosenbach, a historic house located near Rittenhouse Square, will be displaying some highlights from its Spanish, Mexican, and Native American collections. In addition, you can participate in a variety of hands-on activities related to the Rosenbach's collections. The museum will also be raffling off free tickets to three of its exclusive Behind the Bookcase tours.”

Safe Spaces: Empowering Communities, Quilting Stories
Explore the richness and cultural experience right here in Philly at our Multicultural Fair! Join us for a half-day of cultural celebration and fun activities for the whole family in The Heim Center at Parkway Central Library on Friday, November 15 from 1:00-4:00 p.m.

  • Latin American Art Exhibit: Dali Prints presented by the Rosenbach Museum
  • Taino Culture presented by the Taller Puertorriqueño
  • Colombian Culture presented by Acción Colombia
  • African and Caribbean Communities presented by Africom
  • Turkey Culture
  • West Africa Culture
  • Chinese Calligraphy Workshop
  • Bomple Group presented by the Puerto Rican Institute of Music
  • Resource table presented by the Office of Immigrant Affairs
  • Health information table presented by Independence Blue Cross

Eventbrite registration at

This is a free event!

Thank you to the support of the Division of Cultural and Civic Engagement of the Free Library, community organizations, library staff, and volunteers.

Have a question for Free Library staff? Please submit it to our Ask a Librarian page and receive a response within two business days.

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I would like to the multicultural fair.
Cheryl Bartlette - Lawncrest
Saturday, November 9, 2019