COLUMN: Abby Fest an opportunity to learn about diversity

It’s hard to believe that Abby Fest is right around the corner...

By Ken Herar

It’s hard to believe that Abby Fest is right around the corner.

Actually, it starts tomorrow morning (Saturday, Sept. 27) and runs from 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. at the Agri Fair Building. It’s in its seventh year.

The event features all-day entertainment, a beer garden, multicultural food trucks, and more than 60 booths highlighting every facet of our community.

The festival attracts more than 4,000 visitors each year. It’s always fun for all ages.

For those who may struggle with the acceptance of diversity, this is a great venue to challenge yourself and learn about the people and organizations that exist in our community.

Diversity is simply about people and that is what Abby Fest is simply about.

After shaking so many hands and having amazing conversations, I always walk away so fulfilled every time I attend this event.

Preet Rai, a school trustee in Abbotsford and one of the organizers of Abby Fest, said, “We have so much multicultural talent in our community and Abby Fest features this talent through its colourful dances and mouth-watering multicultural cuisine. The festival is a relaxing way to enjoy the diversity of our beautiful city with family and friends.”

I recently had a friend who contacted me about how she wanted her son to learn more about diversity. I met for coffee with Sabrina and her son Erik, and I gave him a Cycling4Diversity shirt and explained to him what it meant. He was thrilled to have one and shared the message with his friends and classmates.

For those who have young children, this is a great opportunity to open their minds to different things that exist in our community. All it takes is just one amazing moment to change a growing mind forever.

This year, Cycling4Diversity Foundation will be having a dunk tank at the event and we encourage everyone come out and take down a few members.

Come and get someone wet in the name of diversity.

C4D executive co-ordinator Anne-Marie Sjoden said, “After great success with the ride this past spring and the many other events like the dunk tank at Mission Fest, we decided to bring it back again to Abby Fest for everyone’s enjoyment.”