Slavic Day at Robson Square highlights the children, not politics
Earlier this week, I wrote a short article about a celebration of Slavic culture taking place today at Robson Square.
It elicited a firestorm of comments on our website over the political situation in Ukraine.
Tensions rose higher today when pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine were blamed for shooting down a Ukrainian miliary plane, killing 40 troops and nine crew.
Out of curiosity, I wandered over to Robson Square to see what was happening at the Slavic Day celebration, which was organized by Andrew Ahachinsky of Russian Palme Theatre.
His family is of Russian descent and used to live in the western Ukrainian city of Lviv near the Polish border.
At the Slavic Day celebration, I saw children dressed in costumes showing off how well they can dance. Many of them were quite amazing.
I also witnessed a young woman singing a Russian song.
I ate some tasty Slavic food.
And I saw some artisans selling their crafts in the skating-rink area.
In my time at Robson Square, I didn't catch a whiff of politics, not even a Russian flag, just a bunch of kids, their parents, and some curious onlookers having fun.
It's sad that an event designed to bring people together could be the catalyst for so much online fury when the Ukrainian Festival went off without a hitch in early May.