Still slightly buzzing from the sugar high from the previous night’s trick-or-treating, the IB sophomore Spanish and French classes boarded their charter buses on the morning of November 1 to travel to the Vinoy Park in St. Petersburg to attend SPIFFS International Folk Fair. Each student carried a small “passport” that they were required to have it stamped at multiple booths from around the world, and they were encouraged to try the different and numerous foods around the park, which ranged from pad thai from Thailand and Gyoza dumplings from Japan to Italian gelato and American fried oreos.

Many students were surprised by how much fun they had at the festival. “I thought it would be pretty small and in a small convention area. I didn’t think it would be as large as it was,” said Elijah Melendez (’16). “Afterwards though, I thought it was pretty great. Everything there was so interesting and it was a lot of fun.”

There were also many other cultural events going on, including a drum circle and Native American dances, but some students felt that they did not have a chance to enjoy it all.

“They could have improved on making less spaces on the passport, so we could have had more time to enjoy the actual SPIFFS day,” reflected Maggie Eason (’16). “But my favorite part was hearing the winners [of the contest].”

The majority of the over 80 submissions were from Robinson students in the high school division, but some students stood out from the rest. Veneta Dinova (’16) won first place for her poster, while Zoe Gray received second place for hers.

At the end of the day, the tired students boarded the bus back to Robinson, thoroughly more enriched and educated about the cultures of the world.