The 22nd Annual Arizona Asian Festival returns Dec. 2-3

(Submitted Photo)

About 20,000 attendees are expected at the 22nd Annual Arizona Asian Festival, scheduled 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 2 and Sunday, Dec. 3, at Scottsdale Civic Center Mall, 3939 N. Drinkwater Blvd.

The educational and family-friendly festival, celebrating all things Asian, has free admission and free parking, according to a press release.

The public is welcome to come enjoy the food, arts and costumes featuring the timeless traditions of Asia’s diverse cultures on display, the release said.

“This festival is one of the most colorful and exciting cultural festivals in our state,” James Park, chair for 2017 festival, said in a prepared statement. “This year we are honored to welcome the Nepalese community to our event, bringing our total to 17 different Asian cultures represented along our Avenue of Cultures.”

Highlights of the festival include:

• Special guests, Reika Gumi, a Japanese all-girl dance group from Tokyo

• Pan-Asian Fashion Show, on Sunday, with more than 100 models wearing traditional costumes

• The 5,000 years’ Chinese Tea Culture and the special mini-festival celebrating the Vietnamese culture, organized and sponsored by the Arizona Vietnamese Culture Club.

The Arizona Asian Association, founded in 1988, has a mission of uniting Arizona’s diverse Asian communities, advocating for their shared interests as citizens, and strengthening the relationship between Asian Americans and all Arizonans.

Membership is open to all. Go to aaaa-az.org for more information.

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