Friday, May 11, 2018

The 2018 Amani Festival in Carlisle, Pennsylvania

On May 5, I attended the Amani Festival in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. I have known about this festival for over 15 years and attended it several time in the past as an educator and cultural consultant.

This year was not different. I had a table, displaying some of my books and had great opportunities to talk with many people who came to my table. These included an American lady who had worked as a volunteer in South Africa for three years as a volunteer as well as a young woman who told me that a friend of hers was going to Tanzania as a Peace Corps volunteer. These conversations were very meaningful. I was touched in a particular way by a reporter who interviewed me and later wrote about the festival in The Sentinel.

My table is always colorful, attracting people. Approaching my table, the lady on the left pointed at a copy of Matengo Folktales and said, "I have read that book!" Completely surprised, I started talking with her. She said that she had bought the book and had me sign it years ago. I think this might have been 2005. She said that she and her husband belong to  a church that has a partnership with the Konde diocese of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania.

I was not able to move around and visit the many vendor booths--about 70--but I had a busy time talking with people at my table.

There was plenty of entertainment, including musical and dance performances.

Some of the dances were performed by students of Harrisburg High School shown in the four photos here.

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