Arab World Fest – an annual festival held on the Summerfest grounds celebrating the music, food and culture of the 22 Middle Eastern countries – will no longer happen.
According to the president of the festival’s board of directors, Ihsan Atta, the festival isn’t ending due to low attendance.
"There has always been a feeling of momentum at Arab World Fest and attendance has always been good, but it was difficult to find enough volunteers to run the festival because our community is small and people travel a lot in the summer," says Atta.
Atta says that because of other life and work demands, the festival's few dedicated volunteers felt they would be unable pull off a quality event and therefore decided it was time to end it.
Arab World Fest started in 1998 and took place in August or September. It was cancelled in 2001 due to Sept. 11 and a few other years because it conflicted with Ramadan.
"We’re sorry to see it end, but it’s the best choice considering the challenges," says Atta.