HOUSTON – KPRC 2 has learned the International Festival is moving its location to City Hall as protests are slated to take place in Discovery Green as the NRA Convention is held this weekend at the George R. Brown Convention Center.
The International Festival of the United States of America, known as iFEST USA, was slated to be held in Discovery Green on Saturday, May 28, from 2 p.m. - 9 p.m. The new location is at the City Hall Reflection Pond.
iFEST said Thursday that Discovery Green had threatened to cancel the festival, which the festival called a “breach of contract and unfairly excluded international leaders who have begun to arrive in Houston planning to attend iFEST USA.”
The International Festival USA released the following statement in response:
“The International Festival USA celebrates the brilliance of our diversity and promotes peace and inclusion not only in Houston but across the country and around the world. Given the recent tragedy in Uvalde, Texas, we believe it’s crucial to engage our community in positive conversations, which is exactly what we seek to accomplish through this powerful event.
“We recognize the difficult time so many are currently experiencing due to injustices and increased gun violence in America. Our event has been threatened with cancellation by Discovery Green due to safety concerns stemming from possible protests at a nearby event. However, we remain committed to implementing the most rigorous safety measures, remaining true to our core values.
“The International Festival USA brings together thousands of local, national, and international leaders to uplift all voices and celebrate our rich cultural contributions to the world. We believe that this cancellation is unnecessary and unfair and hope that Discovery Green will recognize the significance of engaging in positive conversations through the impactful programs our team and partners have created over the past year.
“We cannot allow fear to paralyze the goodness in the world and hope that Discovery Green reflects the resiliency of our diverse community and allows for this event to continue.
Be sure to watch “Houston Life” on Friday at 3 p.m. as The International Festival spokesperson and a performer will make appearances.