Exotic smells wafted across the UNLV campus quad as Brazilian Capoeria martial artists performed on the alumni amphitheater to the tune of percussive Berimbau instruments and drums.
Nearby, brightly costumed Japanese Taiko drummers walked alongside festive Chinese Dragon dancers. A little ways away, Nepalese and Filipino student groups as well as cooks from a local German restaurant doled out traditional ethnic dishes to hungry patrons.
Welcome to UNLV’s 14th annual Festival of Communities, a fitting multicultural event for a campus ranked this year by U.S. News and World Report as having the 10th most diverse student population in the nation.
The festival began more than a decade ago as a platform for various international student groups to showcase their cultures and traditions. But five years ago, the festival was expanded to a community-wide event celebrating Las Vegas’ cultural diversity, said Randy McCrillis, director of the university’s civic engagement and diversity office.