Tying the knot: African Student Association to showcase culture at mock wedding reception

The African Student Association is hosting a mock wedding to celebrate the union of different African cultures with food, music and dancing. Photo courtesy of Tega Ogboru

By Sarah Gallaher | Staff Writer

Complete with food, festivities and fun, the African Student Association will host The Wedding at 7 p.m. Saturday at the Mark and Paula Hurd Welcome Center. The event will resemble an African wedding, bringing two cultures together through a mock reception complete with a bride, a groom and a wedding party.

Attendees will experience the traditional aspect of the reception, including dances inspired by Françafrique culture from the ASA dance club. However, Dallas senior and ASA president Tega Ogboru said the event will include modern twists, such as encouraging formal attire rather than traditional garments.

“[It’s] a culturally immersive dramatization of what an African wedding reception would be like,” Ogboru said. “The two cultures we’re actually representing in this wedding are Cameroonian culture and Nigerian culture. … It is typical to see people from two different countries get married, but it definitely changes the way the wedding takes place.”

According to Ogboru, ASA began 20 years ago and “encourages anything that showcases African culture.” The organization hosts a variety of events that focus on the different subcultures of its members.

“The purpose of it is to create community for students of African backgrounds as well as to teach other people who don’t have African backgrounds about African culture and, more specifically, different countries in Africa,” Ogboru said.

While the wedding party will consist of ASA members, attendees will act as the wedding guests, completely immersing them in the experience. Ogboru said the identities of the bride and groom will remain a secret until the ceremony.

The Wedding differs from events held by ASA in the past. Ogboru said she is excited to share the extravagance of a traditional African wedding with those who have never been, as well as learn more about other subcultures herself.

“As someone who is also involved in The Wedding, it’s going to be interesting for me to do my own culture and to do the Cameroonian culture as well,” Ogboru said.

Dallas junior and ASA member Bianca Onyangore said the event aligns with ASA’s mission “to promote diversity and cultural awareness and to enhance the understanding of and sensitivity of different cultures on the Baylor campus.”

Wedding guests will receive traditional African food as wedding favors and will enjoy performances that combine modernity with tradition.

“I’m excited to see people dressed in their best attire, just enjoying the vibes, playing the games and just really having a good time,” Onyangore said.

Tickets for the event are available through Eventbrite for $15 through Friday. Tickets can also be purchased at the door for $20.