Get The Details On This Year’s International Children’s Festival

The 16th annual International Children’s Festival is happening Saturday, April 16th From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.. I chatted with Hampton’s Media Relations Manager Ryan Downey about this year’s event.

  • Q: Annaka Chesnutt, FOX 43
  • A: Ryan Downey, Media Relations Manager Hampton CVB

How would you describe the International Children’s Festival?

It’s very significant and showcases a lot about the Hampton Roads region, because people may not think we have so much diversity here and we actually do. I think that’s why this festival is so successful and we are able to showcase it at this magnitude with so many countries represented. These people live right here in the Hampton Roads region and represent the countries we feature. This really is a melting pot and we are very lucky to have the opportunity to meet and chat with people from all types of backgrounds. 

International Children's Festival 4 (3) International Children's Festival 5 (2)

What are some of the live performances that we can look forward to?

This year we have entertainment on three stages, so they have The Dragon Head dance, native folk dancers and musicians. They also have interactive bands that will be strolling around and having fun with the audience, and those are just some of the performances that we’ll have. The highlight is the costume parade of nations – which showcases all of the countries that are participating this year. 

Tell me about the passport to adventure…

It’s basically like a VISA. People can purchase a passport for $1 and each country they visit, will give them a stamp. So, it’s basically proof that you visited each country and IF you can visit them all – you can enter into a WORLD TRAVELER PRIZE DRAWING! It really helps to encourage kids to visit every country and learn as much as they can while they’re here.

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What can we expect food wise?

This year you can taste native cuisine from: Africa, Greece, Germany, Panama and Thailand!

Which country is a must see?

Each one is interesting! They all dress in their own native designs and all have cultural activities at their booths, so you just have to check them all out and enjoy. 

I heard you will have some special animals there as well…

YES! We will have camels and kids can take a ride for just $3. The event started in Mill Point Park and has extended all the way down to Queens Way, which is where the animals will be located.

International Children's Festival 3 (3) International Children's Festival 1- Dragon Head Dance (2)