Embracing Our Differences

Like a microcosm of our nation as a whole, Elkhart is a melting pot of nationalities, cultures, and ethnicities. In celebration of this diversity, the Elkhart Parks and Recreation Department is bringing a piece of the Embracing Our Differences movement to Michiana.

The Centerpiece of Embracing Our Differences is a juried, outdoor art exhibit featuring billboard size-images created by local, national and international artists, writers and students reflecting their interpretations of the theme “enriching lives through diversity.” Beginning June 7, pieces from the annual exhibit will be on display at Elkhart’s Island Park as part of the City’s 40th annual Rhapsody Arts and Music Festival.

At the conclusion of Rhapsody, the pieces will be displayed at Elkhart’s Central Park through Monday, July 1. Mayor Tim Neese hopes that the display’s prominent location during signature events – such as Rhapsody and the Elkhart Jazz Festival – will promote kindness, equality, and mutual respect within the community and also highlight our diversity and inclusion to visitors. The City of Elkhart is the first Indiana community to host the exhibit and will be the only location, outside of Sarasota, Florida, to feature the display in 2019.

Embracing Our Differences is a not-for-profit organization based in Sarasota, Florida, that uses the power of art and education to expand consciousness and open the heart to celebrate the diversity of the human family. Since its inception in 2004, their annual art exhibit has attracted more than 2.9 million visitors to Sarasota, Florida’s Bayfront Park. This year’s exhibit attracted 11,791 entries from 111 countries and 44 states. Of the almost twelve thousand entries, 45 were chosen as this year’s exhibit.