Ohio University Southern to celebrate culture, heritage

Published 5:55 pm Sunday, June 9, 2024

By Terry L. Hapney, Jr.
The Ironton Tribune

Live music, local foods, crafts, educational displays and more are among the lineup for the second annual “Culture & Heritage Festival” June 15 at Ohio University Southern (OUS) in Ironton.
Robert Pleasant, OUS director of student services, said the festival—scheduled for noon-7 p.m. in the Shaffer Courtyard at OUS—is a free, lead-in event to the Juneteenth holiday.
“The goal is to bring people together,” he said.
Pleasant said the festival attracts students, faculty, staff members and residents of the Tri-State area.
“Come and spend the afternoon with us,” he said.
The event offers history museums “to reflect on our area’s history and our nation’s history,” Pleasant said.
In addition to arts, culture and entertainment the festival emphasizes health and wellness. Medical professionals from local health agencies will attend with information for attendees.
“We have a kids zone area,” Pleasant said. “We have organizations like Third & Center that are partnering to have activities for kids.”
Musical performances include Catlettsburg’s Holly Forbes who finished in the top 10 on season 21 of “The Voice” on NBC, in addition to 4YLP (For Your Listening Pleasure) musicians and performers who perform at wedding receptions, parties and other events. Lady D, West Virginia’s “First Lady of Soul,” will perform, as well as the Bi-Okoto Drum and Dance Theater out of Cincinnati.
“We have a lot going on and it’s an exciting time,” Pleasant said.
The Culture & Heritage Festival is made possible thanks to the Appalachian Freedom Heritage Tourism Initiative and a POWER Grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission, in collaboration with the Lawrence Economic Development Corporation in South Point.
“That funding is integral to the creation of this event,” said Sarah Simmons, communications and external relations manager at OUS.

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