International Education Week ends with a night of Lebanese culture
Kingsley Burns, The Oklahoma Daily
To cap off OU’s International Education Week, the Lebanese Student Association hosted its annual Lebanese Cultural Night to inform the community about its culture.
The main purpose of the event is to inform OU students and members of the Norman community about what the Lebanese culture is — to go beyond what the media portrays by having participants experience what it means to be Lebanese through dance, food and videos of life in Lebanon, said Hiba Baroud, president of the Lebanese Student Association.
The event was held at 7 p.m. in the Sam Noble Museum of Natural History. Students and families gathered at the sold out event to learn more about Lebanese culture.
People socialized at their tables before the event began, enjoying bowls of mixed nuts on the tables.
The atmosphere was open and welcoming with a diverse group of people.
The event began with singing the United States national anthem, which was then followed by the Lebanese national anthem.
The dinner included a catered traditional Lebanese cuisine including hummus, baba ghannouj, tabbouleh, falafel, grape leaves, kafta and more. The video about Lebanese history and its culture was shown during dinner.
The event also included trivia about Lebanese culture, and during the final portion of the event, the audience got to experience traditional oral poetry called Zajal — traditional Dabkeh dancing and belly dancers dancing while balancing swords on their heads.
Members of the Turkey Student Association went to the event to support the Lebanese Student Association, said Serkan Ozturk, president of the Turkey Student Association.
“Also, we came to enjoy the food because they have some of the same cuisines as we do, like hummus, kafta and grape leaves,” Ozturk said.