PRESIDIO OF MONTEREY, Calif. - For more than 30 years the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center here has been opening its doors annually in May to showcase the diversity of cultures that exist behind the languages they teach.

Following that tradition, the language center hosted students and educators for its Language Day celebration. This year, however, in addition to nearly 3,000 lucky students and educators, numerous members of the public attended the event, something which has not happened since 2001.

Attendees experienced cultural displays, classroom demonstrations, stage performances and a variety of local ethnic food vendors. Even the sun put on a good showing, causing the crowd to be more at-risk for sunburn than chilled by the normal Monterey breeze.

The focal point of the event was the open-air stage where audience members watched more than 40 performances, featuring students, instructors and other local community performers.

In all 72 vendors participated in Language Day, offering food, beverages, clothing and accessories. An additional 12 informational vendors were also on hand, including recruiters from the Army and Navy.

For DLIFLC and the Presidio of Monterey the event was a great success, offering students and community members a chance to experience authentic culture from a variety of ethnic and language backgrounds, something that many in attendance may never have the opportunity to experience again in their lifetime.