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Far East cultures can be explored at the Asian Cultural Festival in Cincinnati

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The Cincinnati Museum Center is playing host to the annual Asian Cultural Festival; a family-friendly, fun and educational event showcasing and celebrating cultural heritage and diversity on Saturday, April 12 and Sunday, April 13.

Asian Cultural Festival The Festival (part of the Museum's Passport to the World series) will give guests a chance to learn about the history, cultures, arts and traditions of people from China, Japan, Korea, India, Taiwan, Vietnam and Nepal.

Activities at this 2-day event include cultural displays, musical performances, martial arts demonstrations, workshops, storytelling, Taiko drum demonstrations and dance performances from various countries.

Some unique, hands-on activities include creating Indian crafts of Ghenisga, clay art and henna and playing a 2000 year old strategic and fast-paced game called "Go."

There will be informational activities where you can learn about the art of origami (paper folding), get information about yoga and learn about Sahaja Meditation.

Other activities include a mixed arts presentation featuring a Taiwanese lion dance and a puppet show and Jade Lin's Tea Party.

Some of the dance performances you don't want to miss are the Japanese Umbrella Dance and the Classical Indian Dance by the Nritya Arpana School of Dance. Also be sure to check out the performance by the Sakura Ladies Chorus from Japan (Sunday at 2 p.m.) and a presentation of Classical Taiwanese music on Saturday at 2:20 p.m.

Another must-see attraction at the Asian Cultural Festival will be the Chinese Dragon Parade taking place on Saturday at 4 p.m.

The Festival will also feature an Asian Marketplace where shoppers can buy authentic Asian merchandise.

Activities for the Asian Cultural Festival will be held at the Museum's Rotunda, Reakirt Auditorium, the Cincinnati Dining Room or at the Duke Energy's Children's Museum at the Cincinnati Museum Center.

Admission to the activities in the Rotunda and surrounding areas is free. Activities in the museums are included with an All Museum Pass for $14.50 for adults, $13.50 for seniors (60+), $10.50 for children (3-12) and $5.50 for toddlers (1-2).

Hours for the Asian Cultural Festival are 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. on Saturday and 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. on Sunday. The general parking fee is $6.

For more information about the Asian Cultural Festival call 800-733-2077 or 513-287-7000 or get online st www.cincymuseum.org.

The Cincinnati Museum Center at Union Terminal is located at 1301 Western Ave. in Cincinnati, Ohio. It is approximately a 4 hour drive from Cleveland to Cincinnati via I-71.

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