Discover Slavic culture during the local Heritage Festival.
11th annual event showcases food, music, dance, fashion and more.
Experience the diverse and unique Eastern European culture during a massive community festival held in Portland during Labor Day weekend.
The 11th annual Slavic Heritage Festival will be filled with traditional songs and dances, a classic Soviet car show, fashion show, cooking class, delicious food for sale and more. The event will run from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday, September 1, at Gateway Discovery Park, 10520 N.E. Halsey Street.
The festival will conclude with a special screening of the movie “Pawn Sacrifice” in the park.
The day is an opportunity for the Slavic community to come together and celebrate the diverse cultures and countries they hail from while sharing those passions with their neighbors. All are welcome to the Heritage Festival, hosted by the Slavic Community Center of Northwest through a partnership with Portland Parks & Recreation, and this year the event will be bilingual — one host will present in Russian and another in English.
The main stage will serve as the centerpiece of the festival, where the different performances will take place throughout the day, some traveling as far as Seattle and Eugene. Attendees can watch Ukrainian and Russian dances, listen to Russian spoon musicians, marvel at gymnasts doing acrobatics and see a demonstration from a Portland karate group.
Throughout the park vendors will offer their services, Slavic artists will show off their pieces, and plenty of delicious Slavic food can be purchased — like pilaf, Shish kebabs, crepes, pierogis, pirozhkis and much more.
The festival is family friendly with lots of activities geared toward children. A local theater group will perform folk stories, kids can get their faces painted, Multnomah County Library will host a story time and the park has a massive playground with a splash pad.
The Slavic community is diverse, comprised of the many former members of the Soviet Union. Each group has a unique background and language, but are united by their shared understanding of the Russian language.
This will be an important day for the local Slavic community to come together and experience its own culture from the songs and dances to fashion and food. It also allows direct access to the organizations that will be there, connecting them with important services and businesses that can support their needs.
Recent estimates by the city of Portland show there are 150,000 Slavic people in the region. The Heritage Festival offers an opportunity for businesses and groups to meet face-to-face with what can sometimes be a hard-to-reach community.
The festival is still looking for sponsors to come on board. There are plenty of opportunities for a partnership — an audio recording that will play multiple times throughout the day thanking sponsors; banners displayed prominently on the main stage; a printed advertisement in the program; and a 10-by-10 foot booth to showcase your business or organization. If you are interested in becoming a sponsor or a vendor please call (503) 544-3667