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FMU to host Pee Dee International Festival, Oct. 15

    FLORENCE, S.C. – Francis Marion University will play host to the 13th-annual Pee Dee International Festival, Saturday, Oct. 15, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

    The purpose of the festival, which is free and open to the public, is to foster a better understanding of the cultures represented in the Pee Dee and increase appreciation for the global community. The event will feature music, dance, food booths, cultural displays and activities for children. The festival will be held rain or shine.

     This year’s festival will feature the Massenkoff Russian Folk Festival, starring world-celebrated singer Nikolai Massenkoff and the Balalaika Ensemble and Russian Folk Ballet. The Massenkoff Russian Folk Festival presents the Russian people in song, dance, and music. The songs are from Tsarist Russia to contemporary Russia. The Balalaika Ensemble features individual artists in solo selections of folk melodies. The Russian Folk Ballet includes dances from Russia, the Ukraine, Moldavia, Armenia, Gypsy and others. The program is a balanced presentation of all these elements of music, song and dance. They will perform from 1 to 3 p.m.

    Also featured is the band Mystic Vibrations, known for the creative flavor it brings to many standard reggae favorites, as well as its own original sound. Drums, bass, guitar and keyboard make up this four-piece act. Mystic Vibrations performs jazz, funk, blues, R&B, and of course, reggae. They will perform at 11:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

    Also performing will be the Florence-Darlington Strings. This group consists of 60 of the area’s young strings players ranging in age from 6 to 18, with 18 nationalities represented. Performing in costumes and introducing the pieces in native languages, they will play their violins, viola and cellos. They will perform at 3:30 p.m.

    The festival will begin at 11 a.m. with the presentation of flags and Todd Matthews on bagpipes. Indian dancers will perform at 12:45 p.m. All performances will be on the outdoor stages in front of Rogers Library.

    A working border collie demonstration presented by Donald Thomas will begin at 12:30 and 3 p.m. on the festival grounds. Native American culture will come alive as Grey Fox demonstrates how Native Americans dressed and lived.

    “Taste of the World” will include ethnic food items for sale featuring American, British, Cajun, Caribbean, Chinese, Colombian, German, Japanese, Indian, Korean and Mexican delicacies. In addition, festival-goers can enjoy an authentic German beer garden and the music of Accordion Bob. Business and cultural displays representing more than 20 countries will be exhibited in the Smith University Center commons all day.

    In its third year is the Continental Express Trolley Ride, sponsored by PDRTA. For a $1 fare, passengers can take a “Magical Mystery Tour” featuring global ghosts and Halloween history.

    There will also be activities for children, including games and balloons.

    The festival is presented by the Florence Family YMCA, Francis Marion University, Florence-Darlington Technical College and the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce.

    Major sponsors include FMU, Honda of South Carolina Mfg. Inc., Pepsi, and Nan Ya Plastics Corp. Business patrons and contributors include DuBard Inc., GE Medical Systems, Roche Carolina Inc., BB&T, DuPont Teijin Films, ESAB Welding and Cutting Products, IRIX Pharmaceuticals, and Wellman.

    This project is funded in part by the Florence Regional Arts Alliance and the South Carolina Arts Commission, which receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts.

    For more information, call the FMU Community Relations Office at 843-661-1225.




11 to 11:30 a.m.                        Presentation of Flags – Todd Matthews, bagpipes

11:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.           Mystic Vibrations Reggae Band

12:30 to 1 p.m.                         Working Border Collie Demonstration

12:45 to 1 p.m.                         Indian Dancers

1 to 3 p.m.                                Massenkoff Russian Folk Festival

3 to 3:30 p.m.                           Working Border Collie Demonstration

3:30 to 4:15 p.m.                      Florence-Darlington Strings

4:30 to 5:15 p.m.                      Mystic Vibrations Reggae Band

#36 / 9-19-05

Last Published: February 22, 2007 10:36 AM
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