Creativecommons.org/ Jayel Aheram
Since 1982, the International Day of Peace, created by the United Nations, has been celebrated annually on September 21st around the world. Sadly, the world cannot make everyday a day of peace, but has settled on a single day of ceasefire so that the war-torn may have but a moment to feel safe. For those who are lucky enough to not live in an area ravaged by war, consider taking this World Peace Day to attend one of these peaceful attractions.
International Day of Peace Celebration in Stockton, California, USA
There are a number of festivals in the United States that celebrate the International Day of Peace, but none are larger than the celebration in Stockton, California. The city shuts down Fremont Street on September 21st for a number of peaceful events. The celebration kicks off with Meditation for Peace at 11:30 where visitors meditate for an hour and connect to the group conscious. This co-aligns with the international moment of silence that is scheduled on World Peace Day to happen annually at noon. After the meditation, the Community Rhythm Circle begins where visitors can find unity through the common pulse. Stockton ends their festival with a Peace Feast where friends and neighbors, locals and visitors, and all those in between gather to enjoy free food. Guests are urged to bring a dish to share with other festival goers if they can.
Global March for Peace and Unity in Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Every year on the International Day of Peace, Canadians gather in Toronto's Nathan Phillips Square to participate in the Global March for Peace and Unity. The event starts at noon with several guest speakers on the topics of peace and equality before the march finally departs at 2pm. Thousands of participants walk up University to Queens Park, the place of Ontario's legislature, where they gather, meditate and converse. At 5pm the group is invited to re-gather at Friends' Meeting House on Lowther Avenue for food, drink and music. Through this march and gathering, the event hopes to demonstrate that we all have the capacity for peace within us and that we must set aside our differences and stand together to provide a voice for the planet.
Stand Up For International Peace at a Comedy Club Near You
Stand Up for International Peace is a unique event that takes place on the International Day of Peace in comedy clubs throughout Australia, Canada, India, Ireland, the United Kingdom and the United States. After all, nothing unites people and brings them together quite like laughter. Stand Up for International Peace was created by collaborating comedians to help bring awareness to this often overlooked global holiday. During this event, comedy clubs like The Gotham in New York City, the Yuk Yuk's chain throughout Canada, The Comedy Store in England and Improv throughout the United States invite comedians to come on stage and do what they do best - make people laugh. Performers from every race, colour and creed perform their acts and bring common ground among the people of the world, hoping to show we are not so different after all.
Master Peace has gathered musical talent and conductors from all over the world to play for their organization and in front of audiences around the world. Throughout the year these musicians travel and play in areas prone to conflict including Egypt, Armenia, Zimbabwe and the Democratic Republic of Congo to perform their music in hopes to warm cold hearts. However, they have never missed a chance to perform on the International Day of Peace. This year, they are taking their yearly celebratory performance to the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam. Through their two-hour long concert, the different musicians from around the world put aside their differences to give a voice to what connects them and say, "Music above fighting." Each musician in the orchestra is on stage with 'an enemy,' a member from another country or group with whom there has been an armed conflict. This demonstrates that even those with the deepest ties of hatred can put that aside to bridge a divide and find common ground.
Sydney Peace Day Festival
The Peace Day Festival in Sydney, Australia is among the largest peace festivals in the world. Their aim is to make the International Day of Peace as big of a holiday as Valentine's Day, and one that no one could forget. The festival packs a number of activities into September 21st, so much so that visitors will not want for activity at any point during their visit. Their festival includes inspirational speakers, art, music, experimental workshops, meditation, dance, vegetarian/vegan food, a chai tent and an Interactive Peace Wall where visitors can leave their mark. All of this settled around the peaceful Bondi Pavilion. The event attracts visitors from all over Australia to help commune with the rest of the celebrating world to further aid the hope that one day this world can find peace among its inhabitants.