Afro-culture on display at Fort Nelson

It’s called the Northern Diversity Series and the community of Fort Nelson will host the three-day event this weekend.

Held three times previously, it is the brainchild of the Northwest Territories-based Arctic Afrocultural Association, a group that reaches out to transplanted Africans, including those of Caribbean descent, who have taken up residence in the North.

It is also one more way for the band to showcase the diverse heritages that exist in the African community when it comes to music, food and traditions.

“Every year we apply for funding through Heritage Canada,” said Benedict Atta of the AACA.

“We then choose a northern community, after discussion with the council.”

Similar events have already taken place in Fort Simpson, Hay River and Yellowknife.

Atta, originally from West Africa, said the group was a great way to connect with other Africans and similar cultures in otherwise remote communities in this part of the country.

“We also invite other people, other cultures, to get to know us better, the First Nations with whom we live. This is why we decided to create this association and show our cultures to others.

The all-ages event, which will include seminars and film screenings, is free.

“We’ll actually have a Brazilian show on Friday and Saturday,” Atta added.

And, no cultural event would be complete without food.

In fact, the association presents it as “food, pleasure and knowledge”.

It takes place in the Fort Nelson Secondary gymnasium on Fridays from 4 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Sundays, for three hours, between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.

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James C. Tibbs