As a hot weekend came to its close, around 70 people gathered to relax on the grass and enjoy a performance by the Somali Museum Dance Troupe at Staring Lake Amphitheatre.

The troupe of five performed from 6-7 p.m. on Aug. 4, showcasing lively dances like the jaandheer, saylici, sharaz and shirib dances. The emcee and troupe manager, Mohamoud Osman Mohamed, strolled up and down the terraced amphitheater between dances, sharing the meaning and histories of the dances and asking audience members’ opinions on the performances.

Around 10 audience members joined the dance troupe onstage for a boys versus girls dance-off, following along with the professional dancers in a dhaanto dance. Cheers from the audience determined that the girls were the winners.

The Somali Museum Dance Troupe gives free lessons in Somali dance from 4-5 p.m. every Saturday at the Tapestry Folkdance Center, 3748 Minnehaha Ave., in Minneapolis. The website is www.somalimuseum.org.

The performance was part of PeopleFest!, Eden Prairie’s 10-day celebration of culture that began Aug. 4. and will culminate with a PeopleFest! party from 3-7 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 11 at Staring Lake Park, 14800 Pioneer Trail.

Eden Teller is the multimedia reporter for Eden Prairie News. She's passionate about fostering productive conversations and empowering communities. When she's not reporting, she can be found reading a book, on a hike or tackling home improvement projects.

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