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The celebration focuses on the importance of the next generation, our children, with the intent of helping them develop an appreciation for the colorful mosaic of cultures in our area.  The event will be for children and it will include stage performances by children, entertainment, and hands-on crafts activities.


Deriving from the rich ethnic and cultural tapestry in our community, we strive to put together an event that will enrich and entertain the young members of our society. This is a mini version of the nation-wide celebrations that have been taking place in the Republic of Turkey as a national holiday – a multi-national event where children are exposed to different cultures and art forms.


The Children’s Day Festival of Cary is co-sponsored by the American Turkish Association of NC and Cary Sister Cities as a gift to the community and made possible in part by a grant from Town of Cary. Hosted by the Town Of Cary - Parks, Recreation & Cultural Resources (


April 23rd Turkish National Sovereignty and Children's Day


The foundation of the Republic of Turkey was laid on April 23, 1920, with the inauguration of the Turkish Grand National Assembly (TGNA) in Ankara. It was the first step toward a new state in Anatolia whose roots were laid by the Turkish National War of Liberation led by Mustafa Kemal, later to be given the name Atatürk – father of Turks. The Turkish national liberation struggle began on May 19, 1919, and culminated in the liberation of Anatolia from foreign occupation, the international recognition of modern Turkey’s borders by the Treaty of Lausanne, and the founding of the Republic of Turkey on October 29, 1923. With the opening of the Assembly, Ankara became the center of the Turkish national struggle and was declared as the capital of the new Turkish Republic on October 13, 1923. On the opening day of the Assembly, Mustafa Kemal was elected as its first president. His opening speech includes clues of what he envisioned this Assembly to achieve. Stating that “there will not be any superior power over the assembly,” he set the stage for the founding of the Republic of Turkey to replace the Ottoman monarchy. The Assembly, as the representative body of the Turkish people, established a national army and defeated the Allied Powers. Under the visionary leadership of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, it created a secular, democratic Republic. On April 23, 1929, upon Atatürk’s proposal, the Turkish Grand National Assembly decreed April 23 as a national holiday, celebrating national sovereignty and dedicated it to Turkish children. Thus Turkey became the first country in the world which celebrates an official Children’s Day.


Today this national holiday is celebrated in Turkey with children from all over the world in the spirit of peace and harmony.

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