By Mick Jensen
There are a record number of food stalls, a variety of stage entertainers and lessons in language and calligraphy on offer at this year’s Multi Cultural Bite event in Ashburton.
The cultural celebration will feature bite size portions of food from 25 stallholders, representing 19 different countries.
As well as three stalls selling food from the Philippines, there are also two stalls each from India, Egypt, Sri Lanka and New Zealand.
The New Caledonia food stall run by the Belpadromes has been a regular fixture at Bite for the last 10 years, while the Dutch stall run by district councillor Leen Braam is making its debut.
Bite co-ordinator Ida Casipit said she believed it was the largest number of food stall holders in Bite history.
She said the main performance act this year was a drumming group called Chitingo Marimba African Band from Zimbabwe.
Other singers, dancers and bands set to perform included Ashburton Fale Pasifika, Ocean Waitokia, Ashburton Silver Band, Ashburton Pipe Band, Indian dancers and the Lagmhor Filipino Cultural Group.
As well as food and entertainment, there will be a number of static displays and interactive activities to keep people occupied and informed.
A world map will show where Mid Canterbury residents hail from and two dimensional posters will provide information about some of those countries.
There is also an opportunity to learn basic Chinese calligraphy and language, Korean writing and language, the Cook Island language and sarong tying and maori stencilling.
A pull up Bite banner will provide the backdrop for people to take souvenir photos on the day.
Special guests this year include the Philippines ambassador Gary Domingo, Rangitata MP Andrew Falloon and Ashburton mayor Donna Favel.
Multi Cultural Bite runs from 10am until 2pm. Food tickets will be sold at specific points and can be exchanged for food at the stalls.