'Diversity Day at Night'

Tuesday, January 28, 2003

With the return of the popular biannual Diversity Day, also comes a new feature - "Diversity Day at Night."

Open to community members and free of charge, Diversity Day at Night is designed for those who can't make it to the full day's events.

Sponsored by AmeriCorps, Storm Lake's Diversity Task Force and Volunteers in Action, Diversity Day at Night has been a collaborative effort to make that days events more accessible to the community.

"It's another chance to educate," said Priscilla Robinson, member of Volunteers in Action. "It will make available events for those who can't come during the day but would like have fun."

Diversity Day at Night will begin at 5 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 6, at the Storm Lake High School.

Ethnic desserts and entertainment will run from 5-5:50 p.m. Entertainment will be provided by the Lao Dancers of Storm Lake High School and the Psalms Gospel Group from the Cedar Rapids area. There will be a fee for the desserts.

Following that will be two sessions, one starting at 6 p.m. and another at 7 p.m.

The following classes are available for the 6 p.m. session:

* Storm Lake's Buddhist Temple - Take a firsthand guided tour of the new temple with a member. If time permits, a brief description of Buddhism will be given upon return to the high school. Space is limited to 20. Please call CommUNITY Education, 732-5711, to pre-register.

* Why We NEED Immigrants - A brief look at Northwest Iowa's economic history and the needs of local industries today. Dale Carver has 20 years of Human Resource experience and has served as a member of Storm Lake's Diversity Task Force since 1991.

* Gang Trends - This session will look at the national trends in gang activities, habits and actions in America's urban and rural settings. Storm Lake Public Safety's Lieutenant Chris Cole has attended several workshops on gangs.

The following sessions are available for the 7 p.m. session:

* Children and AIDS - Molly Hamilton will share her experiences working with AIDS-infected kids and their families in a camp setting in Upstate New York the past few summers. Molly is a graduate of Storm Lake High School and currently studying at Creighton University.

* The Homophobia Stops Here - This session examines common myths about homosexuality, deals with prejudice experienced by gay youth, and provides a primer on scientific and biblical references to homosexuality. Chad Thompson is an Iowan who has experienced ridicule and prejudice as a gay youth.

* Quinceanéra and Day of the Dead - This group will look at the histories of these mainly Mexican holidays and share current celebrations. Two SLHS students will share their quinceanéra stories.

* Women and Politics - Ms. Wilson-Kohler will discuss the role women have played in the American political process and "scene." Molly is a former staff member of the late Senator Paul Wellstone of Minnesota.