Upcoming Event to Celebrate Spokane’s ANHPI Community
By Emma Craven
On May 14 Spokane’s Riverfront Park will be transformed to celebrate the 2nd annual ANHPI (Asian Native Hawaiian Pacific Islander) Heritage Day. The event will be from 1-8 p.m. and is free and family friendly.
Activities will include live performances, Samoan Fire Knife Dancers, more than 100 vendors, cultural demos and a Luau. Food trucks will be serving Laotian, Vietnamese, Chamorro, Hawaiian, Samoan and Filipino food. There will also be a historical exhibit, highlighting the contributions of the ANHPI community in Spokane.
Event Organizer Charity Bagatsing Doyl said, “We want to give anyone that wants to share their culture the opportunity to do so in a way that is exciting and inviting to the whole community.”
Doyl said it’s also an important event for youth.
“Through attending these events, young people get to learn about the importance of the preservation of cultures. This will give children and the community an opportunity to learn and meet members of our community who are immigrants, refugees and BIPOC in a space that is welcoming to all people,” she said. “Cultural celebrations foster respect and open-mindedness for other cultures. Celebrating our differences, as well as our common interests, helps unite and educate us.”
Performances start at 1 p.m, with the Spokane Taiko Drummers and will end at 7 p.m with the Samoan Fire Knife Dancers, with a variety of other performances in-between.
From 5-8 p.m, the event will feature a luau. The luau will include roast pig, Hawaiian hula, ukelele and Samoan Fire Knife Dancers at the Central Pavilion. Tickets for VIP seating at the Luau are $15-$75. The Luau plate is $35 and must be reserved as only 300 luau plates are being made. More information can be found online.
The ANHPI Heritage Day event will also be hosting a COVID vaccine clinic.
Emma Craven is an undergraduate student at Gonzaga University majoring in English and Psychology. She is originally from Leavenworth and currently lives in Spokane with her family. She grew up in a half Jewish and half Catholic household. She has a writing background in news writing, poetry, and fiction pieces. She has previously been published in two of Gonzaga’s writing journals. Outside of school and work, you can find her swimming, reading, spending time with family, or watching Grey’s Anatomy.