Lotus Festival in Los Angeles. Photo by Yong Chavez via Twitter
LOS ANGELES - The 34th annual Lotus Festival drew thousands of visitors in Los Angeles over the weekend to celebrate the blooming of the lotus flowers.
The Philippines served as host country of the festival, where many Asian countries showcased their culture.
"We're able to feature the best of the Philippines and the culture," Philippine Consul General in Los Angeles Leo Herrera Lim said.
Despite ongoing territorial disputes in Asia between the Philippines and China, it was a time for Asian Americans to celebrate as one.
"In here, it's arts and culture bringing people together and to benefit the people and residents in Los Angeles and Southern California," Filipino community leader and Lotus Inc's Dr. Leo Pandac said.
"We can show even if there's some irritation or dispute in the region, our people are still friends with one another and we know how to celebrate," Lim added.
The festival, which took place at Eco Park Lake, took a three-year hiatus as the lake was remodeled. This gave the community even more reason to celebrate.
The Philippines was one of the founding members of the Lotus Festival with China, Thailand, Japan and Korea when it started.
With the Philippines as hosts this year, Lim said it was a way to share many of the achievements, especially the country's economic improvements to the rest of California's Asian American community.
ABS-CBN North America Bureau correspondent Yong Chavez also emceed the event.