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It was one of the last large-scale happenings to be held in Penticton -- or anywhere else for that matter -- before COVID shut down virtually everything in March of 2020.
Ever since, the annual event has soldiered on as a stripped down "virtual" replica of its former self, with little of the fanfare or excitement of the real deal.
But just three months from now on Feb. 25th of 2023, barring any more societal crises, it's making a comeback.
That’s the day when South Okanagan Immigrant and Community Services (SOICS) once again presents the live and in-person version of the marvelous multicultural extravaganza known as the OneWorld Festival.
OneWorld has long been a fave of PentictonNow, not just because it's a great way to expand horizons, chow down on awesome international food and hang with a progressive crowd, but also because it comes at the end of winter.
When the OneWorld Festival is here, you know spring is right around the corner.
"Yes, finally, in person," said SOICS' Local Immigration Partnership Coordinator Elmira Galiyeva Wednesday morning. "We're so excited that it'll be in person again."
There's no word so far on the number of entertainers, exhibitors and vendors for the 2023 event, because SOICS just announced it. But we do know it will unfold, as always, in the spacious East Ballroom of the Lakeside Resort.
"We're just starting to line up vendors and exhibitors right now," said Galiyeva. "But it'll be huge as always. I think it could be the biggest ever."
Potential participants, advised Galiyeva, should have a strong desire to "showcase their culture, whether they're a performer or vendor."
And she had a few more words of wisdom for those considering involving themselves.
"We do celebrate our diversity," she said, "and that's what people think when they hear about it. But with the festival we're also helping newcomers who are thinking of starting their own business to actually start.
"At the festival, they get recognized. Maybe they can give out business cards for their home-based business. Maybe they get inspired and think 'Hey, I can do that.'"
For more info on SOICS or the OneWorld Festival, head here or call 250-492-6299.