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The Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago 2010




Chicago, May 21, 2010
R. Mago

The Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago (PCS) collaborated with Chicago Children's Museum (CCM) at Navy Pier to organize the Passport to the World: India Festival Celebrations on May 16th, 2010.

The PCS performances depicted an enriched mosaic of diverse traditions from the north Indian state of Punjab including the Punjabi folk dances Bhangra and Gidha performed by various Punjabi youths from around the Midwest region. Attendees also participated in turban tying, Mehendi, and other Indian performing arts.

An outdoor procession of more than 200 participants commenced the festivities at Navy Pier with street dancing and the eclectic beats of the Punjabi Dhol drum played by Kevindeep Singh Atwal of Northbrook, Illinois and current Inter-Community Director of PCS Chicago.

As the program moved indoors to the Chicago Children’s Museum, attendees experienced dance performances by children from Indiana and Illinois, Bhangra 101 dance lessons, a turban tying workshop by Sikh American Heritage Organization (SAHO) volunteers, and Mehendi art by Rajneesh Kaur Singh helped by Harpreet Kaur Dhillon.

PCS Chicago and the Chicago Children’s Museum arranged four buses from Palatine, IL to usher community members to Navy Pier at no cost to the attendees. The Chicago Children’s Museum provided complimentary admission to community members arriving on buses as well.

“Passport to the World is designed to expose children to a variety of cultures and to affirm each child’s own cultural identity and ethnic heritage,” stated Keith McCormick, CCM’s Director of Cultural Programs. “It is our hope that programs like Passport to India help prepare young children to thrive in a world that is increasingly interracial and intercultural, and demonstrates to them that cultural differences should not be simply tolerated, but appreciated, encouraged and nurtured.”

"The world is growing smaller and we are all globally inter-connected. This is an excellent opportunity to share our culture with the children of the mainstream community to create awareness about our community, we are here to stay," said Mohina Ahluwalia, the PCS Chairperson. 

“Passport to the World provides us an excellent forum to share our rich Punjabi Indian culture, fine art exhibits, music, dance and performing arts with our fellow Americans in a cordial and welcoming environment,” said Rajinder Singh Mago, President of the Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago, “the staff at the museum is phenomenal,” he added.

 “It is very important for all, especially the children, to experience other cultures because this will strengthen their understanding of other cultures and of people who may look different or wear different clothing," said Pardeep Singh Deol of Wheeling, Illinois and current Youth Director of PCS Chicago.

The Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago is a not-for-profit community organization devoted to promoting the Punjabi culture, language, performing
arts, healthy life style and sports, education, and good citizenship in the metropolitan Chicago area.




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