This weekend's events offer a chance to experience the cultures of Africa, the Caribbean, Germany, the Lowcountry and India without having to leave the tri-county area. The best part? Admission to everything is $7 or less.
Today is the start of the 2011 MOJA Arts Festival, which will offer a variety of free programs, art exhibits, music and more.
Friday at 5:30 p.m., head to King Street for the Caribbean Street Parade, which begins at Burke High School at President and Fishburne streets and ends in Brittlebank Park.
At 6:30 p.m. in Brittlebank Park, the Reggae Block Dance kicks off with music by De Lions of Jah, who will be followed by Da Gullah Rootz. The event lasts until 11 p.m. and includes African drumming and dancing, ethnic food, art and more. Admission is free.
Saturday, head to Hampton Park on Mary Murray Drive for Heritage Day, a free celebration of Caribbean, African and African-American cultures. The day's festivities will include storytelling and Swahili workshops, arts and crafts, live music and dance, food and more.
Visit www.MOJAFestival.com. For more on MOJA, see Page 20.
This Saturday, the town of Awendaw is welcoming back the 16th annual Blue Crab Festival after a four-year hiatus. Admission is $2, and attendees can look forward to enjoying buckets of steamed crabs, fried crabs and fish, Frogmore stew and more. No one should leave this festival hungry.
In addition to feasting on seafood, guests can get down to live music and browse arts and crafts while kids enjoy their own activities.
All the fun is happening at Camp Sewee, 7407 Doar Road, in the middle of the Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge.
German for a day
Germany comes to Daniel Island on Sunday for the annual Oktoberfest celebration at Blackbaud Stadium, 1990 Daniel Island Drive.
From noon-5 p.m., guests can partake of authentic German food and beer, enjoy performances by the Roger Gootman Oompah Band and the Edelweiss Dancers and participate in the cornhole tournament. The first 1,000 attendees will receive a free beer stein.
Children can enjoy activities while adults compete in the Bavarian Challenge, a number of team challenges that include tug o' war, a sausage-eating contest and other games.
Admission is $5 in advance and $7 at the door. Children 12 and under are free. Proceeds will benefit local charities. Visit www.CharlestonBattery.com or call 971-4625.
If you'd rather experience India for a day, travel to Marion Square between noon and 5 p.m. Sunday for India Fest.
Presented by the India Association of Greater Charleston, India Fest will include yoga, sari-draping, cooking and henna demonstrations, Indian food, authentic dance and music, arts and crafts and more.
Admission is free. Visit www.IndiaAssociationofGreaterCharleston.com.