Performance groups dressed in every color of the rainbow took to the Chrysalis stage at Merriweather Park on Saturday for Howard County’s third annual Asian American and Pacific Islander Festival.

Up the hill, notes of various Asian cuisines from the lineup of food trucks mingled in the air. Around the bend, dozens of organizations lined the walkway to sell local goods and offer community resources.

The celebration of cultures and traditions comes during AAPI Heritage Month and was hosted by Howard County Executive Calvin Ball and the AAPI Commission, in partnership with the Merriweather nonprofit Inner Arbor Trust.

Gabby from Spotlight Academy USA, an Indonesian dance academy, gets her makeup touched up before the troupe’s performance. (Kylie Cooper/The Baltimore Banner)
The third annual Howard County AAPI Festival is held on the Chrysalis Stage at Merriweather Park on Saturday, May 11, 2024.
Members of Taal Dance Academy, which teaches Bollywood dancing, bow at the end of their performance on the Chrysalis stage. (Kylie Cooper/The Baltimore Banner)
Chin Daiko performs as dancers from Hee Kyung Lee wait on the side of the stage. (Kylie Cooper/The Baltimore Banner)
The crowd watches performances on the lawn of Merriweather Park at Symphony Woods. (Kylie Cooper/The Baltimore Banner)
From bottom left, Avery, Rio and Caleb practice calligraphy with the help of moms Lindsey (center left) and Gaby at Project Lotus’ table. (Kylie Cooper/The Baltimore Banner)
Tea Horse Sichuan Bistro’s Dance Team wait for their performance time on the side of the Chrysalis Stage at Merriweather Park at Symphony Woods during the Howard County AAPI Festival on Saturday, May 11, 2024.
Tea Horse Sichuan Bistro’s dance team waits for its set on the side of the Chrysalis stage. (Kylie Cooper/The Baltimore Banner)
The Phoenix Dance Academy perform at the Howard County AAPI Festival at Merriweather Park at Symphony Woods on Saturday, May 11, 2024.
The Phoenix Dance Academy performs at the festival. (Kylie Cooper/The Baltimore Banner)
A fire dancer from the Samoan Performance Group balances a torch on his feet during the Howard County AAPI Festival at Merriweather Park at Symphony Woods on Saturday, May 11, 2024.
A fire dancer from the Samoan Performance Group balances a torch on his feet. (Kylie Cooper/The Baltimore Banner)
Taal Dance Academy, which teaches Bollywood dancing, perform at the Howard County AAPI Festival at Merriweather Park at Symphony Woods on Saturday, May 11, 2024.
Children with the Taal Dance Academy, which teaches Bollywood dancing, watch as the group’s women perform. (Kylie Cooper/The Baltimore Banner)
A dancer with Samanwaya performs. Alta, or red dye, is placed on dancers’ fingertips to make their movements more pronounced and for aesthetics. (Kylie Cooper/The Baltimore Banner)
The Tahitian Performance Group gets ready behind the Chrysalis stage. (Kylie Cooper/The Baltimore Banner)
The Maryland Bangla School performs during the Howard County AAPI Festival at Merriweather Park at Symphony Woods on Saturday, May 11, 2024.
Maryland Bangla School performs at the festival. (Kylie Cooper/The Baltimore Banner)

Kylie Cooper is a photo fellow at The Baltimore Banner as part of the Poynter-Koch Media and Journalism Fellowship program.

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