Around the World night shows off South Loop’s proud and beautiful diversity

By South Loop Scoop staff

South Loop’s Around the World Night was a rousing success! So many cultures were proudly represented, so many performances were offered and so much delicious food was eaten! From India to Pakistan to Hungary to Holland to Cuba to Mexico to Greece to Italy to Chicago’s Black Heritage (just to name a few), the displays were informative and filled with history and color. 

Mexico: The booth that I am going to be talking about is the Mexico booth. This booth had paper mache lifesize statues (homemade) that you could take pictures with. At the Mexico table, you could spin a dreidel and win a colorful, fun, decorative prize bag with multiple little prizes inside. The Mexico table had many unique dolls, none that I have seen before and was very fun, decorative and informative. The Mexico booth was very well done! — Penny P., 5th grade

Hungary: Although Hungary may be far away, they are responsible for some inventions that all of us use day to day! The ballpoint pen was invented in 1838 by Laszlo Biro, a Hungarian-Argentine newspaper editor. The other one is the Rubik’s Cube! It was invented in 1974 by Erno Rubik, a Hungarian architect. The Hungarian alphabet has 44 letters, almost double the English alphabet. The table also featured a family photo album showing relatives who grew up in Hungary before they moved to the United States. — Will S., 5th grade

Thailand: Another unique booth that I visited was Thailand. This table was very fun and unique. I thought the information was great and the props were very interacting. Thailand had a trolley that you could put your head through. (The younger kids loved it! ). Thailand also had a very interesting and unique dessert. This dessert was made up of mung bean paste glazed in agur agur. Then it was shaped to look like fresh fruits and vegetables. Thailand also had a performance where Prissara (a person from Thailand table ) played a piece of classic Thailand music on an instrument. The Thailand table did a wonderful job! — Penny P., 5th grade

South Korea: The South Korea display had a lot of interesting facts. Here are some of them: If you fly to Seoul, South Korea, it would take you 14+ hours! Can you imagine being on a plane for 14 hours and when you get there, it would be 29 hours after you left? Their alphabet has 24 letters, 14 consonants and 10 vowels. There are 3,358 islands of South Korea. How could you choose which one to go to? — Anabelle J., 5th grade
Greece: Tia Angelos ran the Greek table. She told me that the Greek flag represents a few things: the blue is the sea, the white is the sky, and the cross is because the majority of the country is Christian. The booth also had a replica of a Spartan helmet. Greece has some famous buildings including the Acropolis and Parthenon. Greece is famous for its statues and temples. Did you know that the Olympics started in Greece? Did you know that you speak Greek everyday? Some examples are pedia in pediatrician means kid, cardio in cardiologist means heart, and podi in podiatrist means foot.  — Oliver G., 4th grade

Pakistan: I learned a lot about Pakistan at Around the World. Did you know that Pakistan is in South Asia? Pakistan’s capital is Islamabad. One sport that people play is cricket. Religions that are popular are Islam (the most popular), Hinduism, Christianity, Sikhism and Buddhism. There are also many languages spoken there including Urdu, Punjabi, Sindhi, and Pashto. One of the coolest things I learned is that Malala Yousafzai, the girl who won the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize, is from Pakistan. — Eloise G., 4th grade

Peru: Peru is home to the famous Nazca Lines. The flag of Peru represents freedom, pride in culture and heroism. They have a population of 32,000,000. Their capital is Lima. However, probably the most famous site in Peru is Machu Picchu, which is one of the seven wonders of the modern world. — Ben S., 5th grade

Panama: Panama is on the border of the Americas. It is the only place in the world where you can see sunrise on the Pacific and sunset on the Atlantic. Besides the U.S., it was the first country to have Coca-Cola. It also has the most bird species of any country in the world. The Panama Canal is 48 miles long, and connects the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. Richard Halliburt even swam the canal. — Ben S., 5th grade

Taiwan: There are some things that we would think of as different in Taiwan. According to those running the Taiwan table, garbage trucks would play “the music that ice cream trucks do.” The main transportation is motorcycles. In Taiwan, they invented boba milk tea. While the island of Taiwan is less than the size of Lake Michigan, it holds 23,000,000 residents. — Ben S., 5th grade

The food: The food was incredible. There was food from many parts of the world. There were plantains from Cuba, arroz con pollo from Mexico, tiramisu from Italy, samosas from India, spanakopita from Greece. Many of these dishes were made by school parents. There was a long line the entire time because everyone wanted to try the foods from different countries. I tried a lot of food and yet I didn’t even try one quarter of all the food that was there! –Alessio C., 5th grade