The Mission of the annual RVA Peace Festival is to provide an opportunity for children, youth, and adults to gather in celebration of peace and diversity. It is our hope that the Festival will foster our community and offer opportunities to:
The seeds for the RVA Peace Festival were planted during a candlelight vigil following the tragic events of 9/11. Muslims wondered what repercussions might befall them as an aftermath of that tragedy. In the dusk, Muslims and others gathered for a candlelight service on the front lawn of the Islamic Center. They were surprised and grateful when a candlelight procession from the neighboring Bon Air United Methodist Church joined the vigil. Those in the procession had come to provide comfort and to pray for those lost in the tragedy of 9/11. This was one of many such stories of extraordinary courage and love following 9/11, and it was to grow into Richmond's "answer" to 9/11.
During the following years, the two houses of worship continued to talk. Then, in the summer of 2004, members of the Bon Air United Methodist Church contacted members of the Islamic Center of Virginia and proposed that they join with other faith-based organizations to hold an event that would foster peace in the Richmond area. The RVA Peace Festival was born.
The RVA Peace Festival is held as close as possible to The International Day of Peace, September 21, as declared by the United Nations. In some years, the date of the festival is adjusted to accommodate religious holidays.
The Festival is FREE and family-safe.
An interfaith event is an important part of the RVA Peace Festival. It includes members of the Baha'i, Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Jewish, Muslim, and Sikh communities.
Many organizations that serve our community are at the RVA Peace Festival, including American Red Cross, Greater Richmond SCAN (Stop Child Abuse Now), and Richmond Peace Education Center. The festive day also includes arts & crafts and games for the children, and a variety of ethnic and international food, as well as arts and crafts vendors.
We welcome volunteers, vendors, artists, organizations, cultural groups. You can raise funds and/or gain more visibility in the Richmond area. Email Annette for more information.
The fiduciary agent for the RVA Peace Festival is the Richmond Peace Education Center, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Your gift is tax deductible to the extent allowed by the law.