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Waterford’s International Festival is a beloved tradition that we celebrate every May. What started as a simple idea in Orchestra class has become an invigorating and educational lunchtime get-together centered around sharing food, music, and cultural traditions from the various backgrounds, heritages, and nationalities represented here at Waterford. 

Kathy Morris, Waterford’s Orchestra Director and Music Department Chair, has always believed that music and food bring people together. Whether it is a celebratory party in her music room in class following her students’ concert, or hosting Alumni in her kitchen and living room for music and treats, Kathy epitomizes what community feels like at Waterford; she is constantly creating spaces and places for people to connect.

Thus, when she and her students started discussing the diversity within our community, and, in turn, what delicious foods are associated with our diverse families, she came up with the idea of an “International Food Festival.” Kathy’s vision came to life through plastic tables lined with delicious international cuisine, all prepared with intention and love from our Waterford families. 

The popularity of this special lunch was quickly recognized and the International Food Festival expanded. Now, Waterford’s International Festival includes food dishes from over 50 countries, traditional dance styles from various cultures, music from around the world, and games, activities and cultural traditions from different nationalities for students to engage in.

So, every International Festival in May, as students, faculty, staff, and families take time during lunch to celebrate each other’s backgrounds, learn new traditions and partake in delicious foods, we are reminded how our differences can indeed bring our community closer together.

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