Student organization celebrates Indian Holi festival

The Baylor and Waco community cover one another in colorful powder on Fountain Mall on Tuesday. Members of Baylor’s Indian Subcontinent Student Association organized the event to celebrate Holi, part of the Indian tradition, the festival of colors. Photo credit: Liesje Powers

By Joy Moton | Staff Writer

Massive clouds of color soared over Fountain Mall Tuesday evening as students and members of the Waco community ran around splashing colors over each other to celebrate Holi.

Holi is part of the festival of colors, an Indian tradition designed to celebrate the arrival of spring.

“It’s about joy, happiness, just getting with your friends and family and celebrating something fun and wonderful,” said Washington, D.C., sophomore Amy Kumar who helped organize the event.

Baylor’s Indian Subcontinent Student Association brought this event to Baylor’s campus to share a part of Indian culture while engaging the community.

Springfield, Ill., sophomore Greeshma Chilukuri who helped organize the event said a goal of the event was to spread the joy of the celebration and ensure that no one felt like a stranger.

“It’s about making sure everyone is having fun celebrating culture and bringing everyone together as a community,” Chilukuri said.

Kumar said this event was also designed to bring awareness to the Baylor community about Indian culture, identity and values.

“It’s a great way of letting Baylor know what Indian culture is like. A lot of people don’t know what Holi is, a lot of people don’t know what Indian culture is in general, and it’s a great way to educate people while everybody’s having fun and meeting people,” Kumar said.

Dallas sophomore Sarah Bhimani of the Indian Subcontinent Student Association said they hope to create a welcoming environment through their celebration of Holi and hope to experience other cultures as they share Indian culture.

“A big part of us is not just to be that one group that stays together,” Bhimani said. “We’re a diverse group that wants to include everyone, make sure everybody knows about all of our festivals, culture, values and things like that while also being a part of theirs.”

People who missed this event can attend the 22nd Annual Gateway to India Culture Show Saturday, March 25 in Waco Hall.

The show is a competition where students from various universities including, University of Texas at Austin, Texas A&M and Rice University, make teams with Indian based themes designed to showcase their culture through a two-to-three minute performance.

“We welcome everyone on Baylor’s campus, everyone outside of Baylor’s campus, and we just want everyone to come and have fun,” Bhimani said.

The event is free and an Indian dinner will be provided. The doors will open at 5 p.m.,and the show will start at 6 p.m.

Members of the organization hope the show will give visitors a good glimpse of Indian culture and enhance relationships in the community.

“We just want everybody to come out and enjoy our events,” Kumar said. “We just want to meet everybody on campus and just form a family and show what our culture is.”