The Cobb International Festival arrives at Jim Miller Park on August 27

By Brian Benefield

Who doesn’t love a big (almost fall) festival, especially when admission and parking are free? This multicultural event, the Cobb International Festival, returns this year on August 27 from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.

It debuted in 2019. It’s been postponed for the past two years due to the pandemic, and is the brainchild of Cobb’s board commission chair Lisa Cupid.

I spoke with Suzzanne Anicette, Cobb Art Place’s Art Installations Coordinator, who let me know that over 5,500 people attended the inaugural event in 2019 and are expecting twice as many this year. Over fifty booths will be inside the Jim R Miller Park Event Center showcasing their international artwork, apparel and jewelry.

Glorious food, and there will be plenty of cultures represented, including Nigerian, Mexican and Asian, to name just a few of the twenty different offerings at kiosks and food trucks. Meal prices will range from $6 to $20. Tasting the varied cuisine of other regions is always something I indulge in because you can learn a lot from how other people prepare and cook food. Food is a universal language. We all understand the need for sustenance, which crosses all barriers and brings us together. My friend and recent award-winning chocolatier, Chef Elizabeth Weaver, will be selling her delicious confections there. You have to look for his stand; trust me on this.

Similar to Touch a truck, there will be plenty of representatives from the Cobb County Police and Fire Department to interact with the kids and kids at heart. Several indoor and outdoor stages will welcome local and international artists who will sing, dance and wow the crowds with their talents.

As a writer and somewhat of a book lover, I’ll be looking to the Cobb County Bookmobile. This mobile library provides access to resources that may not be available to many due to economic or transportation barriers. It works the same way as the regular library in that you can borrow items from the Bookmobile and return them to any other location in the library. We are fortunate to have such extensive literary assets in our county, and if you don’t already have a library card, you can get one on site at the festival along with photo ID that shows you are a resident of Cobb.

I love dogs, and Cobb Animal Services will be available with four-legged furry friend adoptions. And, of course, petting the gentle creatures will be allowed for children of all ages. The inflatables are also free for children and will be supervised so as not to let too many people frolic at the same time. It’s exciting to see these types of events making a comeback, and I have a feeling this one will last for many years to come. Bring the whole family to celebrate our great diversity in Cobb County with food, art and entertainment from diverse cultures near and far.

For more information, visit the Cobb International Festival website at https://www.cobbcounty.org/parks/event-centers/cobb-international-festival

Brian Benefield is a Dekalb County-born Atlanta native who has lived in Cobb since 2003.

He has worked in hospitality, marketing, real estate and more recently food tourism.

Married to Cecilie Benefield for 12 happy years.

They have a dog, Miss Pickles.

Hobbies are mountain biking, running, gardening and trying new recipes in the kitchen

Member of Les Marmitions cooking club since 2016, where we cook 5-course meals with local Atlanta chefs.

Darcy J. Skinner