Evanston’s lakefront turns into a global village for the 24th Annual Ethnic Arts Festival this Saturday and Sunday.

Visitors can experience the song, dance, cuisine, and arts and crafts of countries near and far from noon to 7 p.m. each day in Dawes Park, Sheridan Road at Church Street.

Admission is free, and complimentary shuttle bus service is provided from the Northwestern University parking lot, three blocks north of the festival site.

The festival opens Saturday with a colorful Parade of Nations ceremony featuring the flags of more than 100 nations.

Photos of last year’s festival by Jim Mizell.

Among the other festival highlights are a juried arts and crafts sale, artist demonstrations, interactive art activities, ethnic foods, and live entertainment on two stages.

This year’s performers include Curumin, JASC Taiko Youth Ensemble, VonOrthal Puppets, storyteller Linda Graham, S.O.U.L. Creations, and Sones de México Ensemble.

A complete schedule is available online.

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