By Hyunji JungJune 18, 2018
USAG HUMPHREYS, South Korea - The Spring Festival 2018, an annual event held at U.S. Army Garrison Humphrey, was successfully hosted by both the garrison and Pyeongtaek city May 19 to 20, in an attempt to promote cultural understanding between U.S. Army and the citizens of Pyeongtaek city.
This event was held to celebrate Korean-American friendship and cross-cultural understanding.
To facilitate that, Independence Park on USAG Humphrey was opened to the local public and Korean residents, so they could come inside and see what they haven't been able to until now.
"Nowadays, Camp Humphrey was huge expanded. I thought it is difficult to understand the different culture because I don't know exactly what is going on in the Camp Humphrey. However, today I entered here and I experienced a lot. Through these experiences, my sense of difference and worry has decreased," said Pyeongtaek resident Eunhae Kang.
The event included band performances, Children's inflatable playground, games and a Korean cultural booth; where people could try Korean traditional clothing and games.
Among the most popular events was the kid's play area with inflatable playground, bumper cars, rides and slides.
"My daughter especially loves the inflatable slide and she really enjoyed it with her friend, so she tried it over and over … and I think this event is a very positive experience for us," said Jenny Rippeth a spouse stationed at USAG Humphreys.
Outside of USAG Humphrey's drive-out gate, there was a companion Spring Fest hosted by Pyeongtaek City and Pyeongtaek International Exchange Foundation (PIEF).
This event included local merchants, food, games, a flea market and various performances by local performers, K-pop tryouts and the Eighth Army Band.
"It is always great to have this kind of event, to be able to meet different people and different cultures. It helps to understand each other better. I think this event is well organized," said Erik Schuster.
Both USAG Humphreys community and the city of Pyeongtaek worked for months before hand to provide a successful event, aimed at bringing the best possible event for the community.
"PIEF worked months beforehand to prepare the festival. Moreover, we will do our best to make the Spring Festival is the best festival to represent Pyeongtaek City," said Eun Hee Myeong, executive director for PIEF.