By Joe Jarosz
October 15, 2014
KANSAS CITY, Missouri – If you’re building a park or touring historic homes and need a break, then Don Bosco might have an option for you.
From noon – 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 18, the Don Bosco English as a Second Language Center at St. Anthony’s, 309 Benton Blvd., will host its first Multi-Cultural event.
Leslie Gasser, fund development director for the Don Bosco Center, said the ESL Center has been partners with Donnelly College in Kansas City, Kan., for a while. Last year, the college invited students and faculty to their multi-cultural event.
“It was completely free and a great way to raise awareness about different cultures in the community,” Gasser said. “It’s a great way to invite the community into our school to see the different cultures we help.”
Gasser said the event will feature an open house, where members from the community will be able to get a look inside the school. The festival will feature food, crafts made by the ESL students and music and entertainment from around the world. The event is free and family oriented.
The same day, the Scarritt Renaissance Neighborhood Association is holding a build day for its new playground on The Concourse. A ribbon-cutting will be held hours later, weather permitting. The playground build will need around 250 volunteers. Also scheduled for that Saturday is the Northeast Kansas City Historical Society Fall Homes Tour.
Gasser said she and the Rev. Paul Turner have been kicking around the idea of the multi-cultural event since the spring.
“He [Rev. Paul] said the Homes Tour will be that day, so why not use it to our advantage,” Gasser said, adding she called Kent Dicus [president of the historical society] to talk about having their event the same day and he was on board with the idea.
Nearly 20 area organizations including Holy Rosary Credit Union, Jewish Vocational Services, Ameristar Casino, and the Northeast Kansas City Historical Society, just to name a few, will set-up tables at the event to engage the guests. Gasser said they are not charging to have tables at the event.
“We might change that next year to help the event grow but it isn’t meant to be a money-maker,” Gasser said. “It’s a community builder.”
Gasser is hopeful that the event becomes an annual happening at the ESL Center. They’re expecting a good turnout, hoping for around 400 people to stop and visit.
“We’re really proud of the center and what the students have done there,” Gasser said.