LIVINGSTON, NJ - The West Essex YMCA is hosting a town-wide Diversity Festival, as a kick-off to this year’s Youth Appreciation Week festivities that begin on May 17 and end on May 25. The event on Sunday, which will run from 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., is free, and will be held rain or shine at 321 S Livingston Avenue in Livingston. Mayor Michael Silverman will open the event at 1:00 p.m, and a five-hour show of song, dance and international fashion will follow until 6:00 p.m. Country tables will display cultural items from around the world, and various ethnic food samples will be offered throughout the day. The goal of the festival is to provide a learning experience for children and adults alike.

“The West Essex YMCA is delighted to be hosting this event,” said West Essex YMCA Associate Executive Director Cheryl Francione. “The festival is a day to celebrate the diversity of our community. It’s a time to enjoy each other’s cultures, foods, entertainment and company. We invite everyone to come out and enjoy the day, and experience each other’s traditions. We may have different customs, but we are really not so different after all. Each of us plays an important role in making our community a very special place.”

Francione added, “The West Essex Y and the Youth Appreciation Week committee welcome one and all to join us, and be part of the celebration. Children are invited to arrive in costume and partake in the international fashion show. Families are invited to host a table from the country of their choice.”

For further information or to become a festival volunteer, call 973 992 7500 ext 106 or send an email to