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Unity Fair: Many Tribes, One Vibe!

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Half Hollow Hills is known for its diversity and our way of celebrating this diversity is the annual Unity Fair presented by the HHH PTA Council. The most recent one, on Sunday March 24, marked 20 years of this event, which showcased the theme of “Many Tribes, One Vibe.” The goal of this highly anticipated event is to embrace the cultures present in the Half Hollow Hills community and to educate the youth of the district about the various ethnic backgrounds in our district.

After the opening ceremony, with the singing of the National Anthem by Isabella Negron, there were a variety of stage performances including Chinese acrobat, Li Liu, who shared her stories of traveling from Beijing, China to America and even taught the audience fundamental Chinese words. Sophomore Sierra Weaver, who had her first unity fair experience, shared “It seemed interesting and very cultural.”

Her performance was followed by the High School East Side Steppers, Flamenco dancer, Irish Step Dancers, Steppers from Hills West, and a Bollywood dance troop. These performances defined and highlighted the diversity of our district, emphasizing the “Many Tribes, One Vibe” initiative.

Appearances were made by the Spanish, French and Italian Honor societies and the Asian Club of Hills West, who created arts and crafts in relation to their respective language. Mrs. Mees, advisor of the Spanish Honor Society, explained that the role of this organization in the unity fair is to teach kids how to make Spanish decorations and teach them about the Spanish culture. According to Mrs. Houston, French honor society had a Mardi Gras themed craft for children, which is a holiday commonly celebrated in the French quarters of New Orleans.

Additionally, the Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) club was present to let kids color different flags to represent and spread awareness of the LGBTQ community in HHH.

The Unity Fair even offered a scavenger hunt where players could collect a phrase from each of the language club booths and then translate it to receive a prize.

Throughout the day, there were many booths scattered across West Hollow, including a Tumi band, caricature artist, and a calligraphist, but the day’s fun events didn’t end there. There was an international food court, hosted by all of the schools in the district, with foods spanning across the globe, including West Indies/Caribbean cuisine, Haitian, Indian, Greek, and many more cultural foods. In the bustle of the Unity Fair, visitors snacked on foods, sampling cultures from all over the world.

To truly present the “Many Tribes, One Vibe” ideal, there was a Tony Moon Hawk Langhorn of the Paumanauke Pow-Wow with regalia, dance, and arts and crafts.  Later, the Unity Fair had performances by the Stony Brook Bhangra team and Japanese Taiko drummers. .

Since the unity fair is a free and district-wide event, students from all over come to experience and learn about the unique cultural features the Half Hollow Hills community has to offer. Junior Effat Rahman, who has attended the unity fair previous years, said, “I absolutely love it. I love the diversity here. I love eating all of the free food; that’s my favorite part. And I love seeing our community all come together as one.”