Representatives from UNESCO Cities of Crafts and Folk Art are holding in Paducah their first annual meeting this weekend.
Laura Oswald of the Paducah Convention and Visitors Bureau said eight of the 20 Crafts and Folk Art-designated cities will be represented, including: Al-Ahsa, Saudi Arabia, Icheon, South Korea, Italy, Fabriano, Hangzhou, China, Nassau, Bahamas, San Cristóbal de las Casas, Mexico, Paducah, USA and Santa Fe, USA.
Oswald said Paducah is looking forward to hosting a conversation among Creative Cities.
“City leaders that are traveling here are looking at some of the best practices," Oswald said. "Like the Lowertown Artist Relocation Program, the wall-to-wall murals, the Paducah School of Art and Design and the American Quliter’s Society QuiltWeek event.”
Paducah CVB Executive Director Mary Hammond and American Quilter's Society Executive Show Director Bonnie Browning made the formal invitation at a UNESCO meeting in Östersund, Sweden in September 2016.
The festival surrounding the meeting runs Saturday through next Thursday. A public forum with several of the UNESCO city representatives will be on Sunday at 3 P.M. at Maiden Alley Cinema.
Paducah joined the United Nations organization in 2013.