Kaleidoscope festival shines light on local hearts

Maya Palavali, Staff Writer/Designer


Music and laughter floated around as people from all parts of the world joined together to celebrate through art. For one day, Andrew Brown Park East transformed into a colorful wonderland for all to enjoy.

The festival on Oct. 8 started with live performances surrounded by a unique crowd enjoying the festival.

“We have a lively audience that is willing to participate,” Bandan Koro: African Drum & Dance Ensemble member Timothy Patterson said. “A lot of what we [were] doing [was] call and response, so when there is an energy exchange, it feels good.”

Along with smaller artistic activities, the Coppell Parks and Recreation department held its annual chalk art contest. The theme for this year was “A Kaleidoscope of Colors.”

The event featured a variety of small businesses lined up on one side of the park, separated into food and marketplace vendor categories.

Award-winning food trucks, new and old, such as Cousins Maine Lobster came to the event to provide on-site refreshments.

“We have a lot of regulars that come here often and it always has a good turnout,” Cousins Maine Lobster line chef Deja Chester said.

The marketplace welcomed businesses from all cultures, highlighting the importance of diversity through its lively atmosphere. Each stall had the freedom to advertise their own creations.

“Our market [stall] is for people who own pets and want to get treats,” R&B Dog Bakery employee Jasmine Flores said. “The person right next to me is more [for] people who like to grill.”

The market meant more to each vendor than what was on the surface; it gave opportunities to express and grow as individuals.

“I have been a stay at home mom for almost nine years,” said Lubina’s Collection owner Lubina Siddiqui, who sells jewelry. “I started this recently.It gives me confidence and is a healthy way of socializing.”

The marketplace also included various organizations in the Coppell community interested in educating people about inclusivity.

“It is a place where we can all get together and share our culture,” Allies in Community member Tasnim Benhalim said. “Sharing is part of the educational process.”

The performances and vendors all had a unique perspective and reason for being at the Kaleidoscope celebration. Many have history in the city, linking them to the festivities.

“Three of us have a Coppell connection and one of us lives here still,” The Selkie Girls lead singer Jaycie Skidmore said. “So we are familiar with the area and it is fun to do something in your hometown.”

The festival is a way for many to learn from the members of their community.

“The heart of what Kaleidoscope does is it lets people see someone may be different from themselves with a deep appreciation,” Benhalim said.

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