Experiences at Asian Pacific American Heritage Month events: Part 1

Hi everyone! My name is Ha and I’m currently interning at Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Chicago (Advancing Justice-Chicago). Since this is my first time in Chicago, Advancing Justice-Chicago has given me the best task ever! During Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (APAHM) in May, I will visit several cultural events and update everyone about my experiences through Advancing Justice-Chicago’s blog. As a student from the Netherlands, it is very interesting for me to see Chicago from a non-tourist perspective. Every week I will give you a recap of my experiences at one of the events, I hope you like it!

Since I’m living in Uptown, my first event was the Uptown Asian Pacific Heritage Month Kick-off Celebration.  This event highlights the rich and vibrant traditions of the Asian Pacific American community by organising workshops, performances and artistic displays in Uptown. On a sunny spring day, I’ve walked from Argyle to Wilson to see art-work by local artists. The beautiful Japanese blossoms paintings make Broadway much more colourful and attractive. I hope I could see more beautiful paintings the next few weeks on Broadway!

After the art-walk, I could choose between so many shops to get my lunch. I decided to get the popular banh mi at Ba Le sandwiches. It is amazing how easy it is to get some authentic Vietnamese food in this neighbourhood. It makes me less homesick, because I could actually eat my ‘mum’s food’ in Uptown. After finishing my banh mi I went to a parking lot on Argyle, where the event was held. The first performance was a dance performance by little children, who were dressed up in Chinese traditional clothes. After their performance, the boys got the chance to show everyone their Kung Fu talents. These kids were so great and talented! After the children’s performances, I got to see some students from the Korean American Resource and Cultural Centre performing Korean drumming. The drumming reminds me of music from some historical Korean dramas that I have watched in the past. Thanks to the beautiful music, more people came to the parking lot to enjoy cultural performances. Altogether, it was a fun event and the sunny weather made the day just perfect.

My next events will be ‘Paradise Lost and Found: A conference on Indigenous Hawaiian Nature and Culture’, on May 9 and ‘Celebration of Chinese Art presented by the Chinese American Service League’s Associate Board’, on May 11. Check our calendar for more events!

By Ha Duong