The African-Caribbean Club (ACC) will be hosting its 11th annual Culture Night starting at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 21 in the VU Multipurpose Room. Western students can get in for $10 with a valid student ID and non-student guests can get in for $13.
The event will showcase modern African and Caribbean cultures with music, dancing, food and a fashion show, displaying the diversity of cultures represented in Western's African and Caribbean communities. A guest speaker will be invited to talk about the challenges of transitioning from African cultures to American ways of life.
“[Attendees can] learn about who we are in person, instead of hearing about Africa on TV,” ACC President Abdi Ahmed said. “[Attendees] can learn Africa is not one culture, one tribe, one language.”
Professional dancers, including a belly dancing troupe representing the dance styles of Egypt, will perform at Culture Night. Catered food from across the African continent will be available buffet-style, provided by University Dining Services and based on recipes from ACC members. ACC board members will be in the university kitchens showing the University Dining Services staff how to make the food, according Lydia Goitom, a sophomore and ACC board member for public relations.
Friends and family of ACC members will be in attendance, including members of African-Caribbean clubs from other universities, Ahmed said.
The ACC has about 35 members, including students from Kenya, Somalia, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Nigeria, Cá´te d'Ivoire, Senegal, Guinea and Haiti, as well as American students who either have African heritage or have an interest in African and Caribbean culture.
“[At club meetings] we learn about current events and hear other perspectives on Africa,” Goitom said. “And we learn about each other.”
“It does get kind of loud and debate-ish,” she added, “but it's always respectful.”
The ACC was created 11 years ago and has been hosting Culture Night every year since. Club membership is open to students of all backgrounds. Club meetings take place at 6 p.m. every Tuesday in Bond Hall 112.