OUT OF AFRICA is OUT-STANDING!
Houston, Texas, May 2008: ETHIOPIA, the cradle of mankind and the birthplace of coffee, was in the spotlight for two fun-filled weeks in Houston, Texas, America's 4th largest city. Thanks to civic pride, high spirits, hard work and initiative, its annual I-Fest attracts up to 450,000 visitors and is considered the largest event of its kind in North America. This year's "Out of Africa" theme featured exhibits from many African countries, led by Ethiopia whose high-level delegation included the State Minister for the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Minister of Information, Ethiopian Tour Operators Association, Ethiopian Airlines, City Commissioner, Addis Ababa and the Ethiopian Exporters Association, it was a successful combined performance. Many of these participants provided copies of Africa Travel Magazine's new Ethiopia Millennium edition from their exhibits. Keynote speaker for the opening luncheon was Andrew Young, former U.S. congressman, mayor of Atlanta, Georgia, and the United States' first African-American Ambassador to the United Nations. The mayor's gala dinner was an opportunity for the Ethiopian delegation to meet and greet Houston's leaders in the business community.
A solid foundation for the program was established by the Honorary Consul General of Ethiopia, in Houston, Texas the Honorable Gezahgen Kebede and President and founder of EATIC, The Ethio-American Trade and Investment Council, based in Houston. The Honorary Consul General of Ethiopia was instrumental bringing the event to Houston and had a major role during the two week long celebration in mid April. He also enlisted the support of the Ethiopian Minister of Culture and Tourism, of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, Ethiopian Ministry of Information, and the Embassy of Ethiopia in Washington and Ethiopian Airlines
The show was a real eye opener for Texans and thousands from neighboring states, who enjoyed an authentic "Taste of Ethiopia" in the heart of America. Attractions included a lifelike replica of a rock church from Lalibela in Northern Ethopia and a landmark from Harrar in the Ethiopia's Eastern zone. Performances by the Ethiopian National Dance Group were staged during the show and at venues throughout the city. Ethiopian fashion shows, arts and crafts displays, traditional textile and garments, Ethiopian coffee and Ethiopian fresh cut flowers were available from the many exhibits. The result was an opportunity for Ethiopians to introduce their products and learn that they must be competitive to succeed in the US market.
Ethiopia's Lucy Legacy Wins
"We have come from Santiago, Chile to see the exhibit."
"An inspiration to go to Ethiopia."
"All the way from Argentina to meet Lucy.
"Please thank the government of Ethiopia for this once-in-a-lifetime experience!"
"Hey Lucy! What a joy it was to get to see you in person!"
"A tremendous teaching opportunity for the youth of Houston."
"Absolutely phenomenal! What a pleasure! What an education!"
"I had no idea how much Ethiopia added to our civilization!"
"I have been truly blessed to have stood and looked at Lucy."
"Lucy speaks after 3.2 million years. Our story must be heard."
Ethiopian Delegation Members in Houston, Texas
H.E. Tadelech Dalacho, State Minister, Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, Head of delegation
H.E. Berhnu Hailu, Minister, Ministry of Information, Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia
Dr. Ayalew Sisay Woldegebriel, Tourism Commissioner, City of Addis Ababa
Mr. Yitbarek Befirud Belihu, Head, Addis Ababa Trade & Industry
Mr. Tsegaye Abebe, Chairman, Ethiopian Horticulture Producer Exporters Association
Mrs. Kidan Ghiorghis Mellessa, Board Chairperson, Ethiopian Tour Operator Association
Dr. Solomon Ali Mohammed, Head, Public Relations Department, Ministry of Culture and Tourism
Mr. Sisay Getachew Azage, Ministry of Culture and Tourism
Mr. Belay Getachew Esuendale, General Manager, ETOA
For more information:
Ethio -American Trade and