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Celebrating Cultures

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I-House offers the chance to discover the world under one roof. Celebrations of distinct cultural traditions take place year round. Here are a few recent photo-friendly events where residents, the general public and I-House members enjoyed unique cultural expressions that showcased both food and art. Check the I-House calendar online for Cultural Theme meals and events if you live locally and would like to participate!


Lunar New Year - The Year of the Dragon

Chinese Lion Dance
Chinese dancing lions rang in 2012 as The Year of the Dragon in the I-House dining hall on January 24th, to the pleasure and amusement of residents and
dining patrons. This traditional ceremony is intended to scare away evil spirits by feeding the hungry lions to help summon luck and fortune. In the photo at
right, an enthusiastic lion takes a bite out of lettuce dangling from an I-House chandelier while musicians accompany the lion with drums and cymbals. Non-lion palates were pleased with a variety of dim sum and delicious traditional Chinese dishes including Sesame Bok Choy and Tangerine Chicken Stir Fry.

Nowruz - Persian New Year

Haft-seen table
Nowruz marks the first day of spring in the Iranian calendar and the vernal
equinox, typically on March 21st. The Persian translation means "New Day"
and celebrations of Nowruz include food and creation of a "Haft-seen" table, or table of seven things (all that start with S): Sumac (crushed spice of berries), Senjed (sweet dry fruit of the lotus tree), Serkeh (vinegar), Seeb (apples), Seer (garlic), Samanu (wheat pudding) and Sabzeh (sprouted wheat grass). The celebration also featured a guest dancer who performed in front of the Haft-seen table and the dining menu featured traditional foods, such as, Ash-e Reshteh (Persian Noodle Soup), KooKoo Sabzi (Herb Omelet) and Sabzi Polo Ba Mahi (Rice with Fish).

Practicing Pysanky - Ukrainian Easter Eggs

Practicing Pysanky - Ukrainian Easter Eggs

Pysanky is the Ukranian word for the ancient Eastern European art of egg decorating. Meaning "to write," the task is achieved with a stylus called a kistka to place wax on the egg shell in a process similar to batik.

To celebrate spring, residents of I-House were treated to a workshop orchestrated by Taràs Czebiniak, where twelve residents learned basic designs and enjoyed camaraderie and cookies. Current resident Mila Konovalchuk, writes: "For me and a lot of other people who participated in this workshop, this was one of the most memorable I-House experiences."

To learn how you can practice pysanky visit learnpysanky.com.