Multicultural festival showcases Murray Bridge’s diversity
Singers, dancers and foods from Europe, Asia, Africa and the Pacific have featured at the 2022 Murraylands Multicultural Yuntu-Walun Festival.
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A celebration of Murray Bridge’s multicultural communities has filled Sturt Reserve with colour and song over the weekend.
Chinese and Indian dancers and Nigerian, Vanuatuan and Ngarrindjeri singers were among the acts featured at the second Murraylands Multicultural Yuntu-Walun Festival on the riverfront on Sunday.
Just as important, though, was the mingling that took place off-stage, as friends old and new shared food, conversations and cultures.
That sense of harmony was important in a multicultural community like Murray Bridge, Mayor Brenton Lewis said.
He recounted the story of his old neighbour, Tony Pescheta, whose father had come from Italy with “a suitcase full of bills”, worked in the railways and made a life for himself and his family.
The Lewises and the Peschetas had always got along famously, he said, and still caught up for meals and to remnisce.
He hoped the same sort of friendships were being forged between locals and the current generation of migrant families.
“This is still (a city) full of opportunity,” he said.
“It’s such a wonderful feeling to see people who look forward, who have hope and see that they can make a bright future for themselves and their families, here in Murray Bridge; and we’re a lot better off for it.”
Australian Migrant Resource Centre CEO Eugenia Tsoulis said Sunday’s event was a reminder about just how diverse Murray Bridge’s population was.
About one in four Murray Bridge residents was born overseas, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
Languages other than English are spoken in more than 700 local households.