The UF Indian Student Association and Student Government brought together more than 1,000 students and families on Sunday, March 25, for the annual Holi Festival, an Indian celebration emphasizing the importance of community. When the clock struck noon, the explosion of color kicked off as different colored powder hit the air and massive bursts of water from the Alachua County Fire Rescue truck made it rain for the crowd, where members of the crowd began splashing each other with different colors of powder.
Holi is a traditional Indian holiday that also celebrates the commencement of spring. It represents bringing together people from all walks of life to dance, sing and playfully smear others with colorful powders and water.
The celebration of diversity is meant “to renew your friendships, relax your mind, and liven your spirit. Everyone and anyone, regardless of background or identity, is welcome and encouraged to participate in this exciting and colorful event,” the event page said.
(Nelsa Vazquez, a junior majoring in economics, participated for the first time in the colorful event.)
“I’m so glad I was able to take part in this event that is bringing together people of all backgrounds. It’s a refreshing thing to see when the news is often so focused on the negative aspects of life. My only regret is just discovering this now,” said Nelsa Vazquez, third year economics major at UF.
Free T-shirts, color powders and Krishna lunches were given to the first 1,000 attendees. Sponsors for the event also included: SG Cabinet Diversity Division, Volunteers for International Student Affairs (VISA), UF Office of Graduate Diversity Initiatives, The Mayor's Council, Women's Student Association (WSA), Inter-Residence Hall Association (IRHA), Asian American Student Union (AASU), Indian Graduate Students Association (IGSA), The Standard at Gainesville, The Pavilion on 62nd, Canopy Apartments, India Bazaar, Lollicup and Chuy's.