Students celebrate, dance during Holi festival


Olivia Swenson-Hultz

Students gather colors to throw at each other during Holi: Festival of Colors on Saturday in the South Quad.

Olivia Swenson-Hultz, Associate News Editor

A mass of Gulal, a traditional Indian powder, filled the air, coating participants in an assortment of different colors at “Holi: Festival of Colors” on Saturday afternoon in the South Quad.

Students ran across the quad through the swarm of colors and water, stopping to dance to Indian tunes such as Bollywood music.

Students dance to traditional Indian tunes at Holi: the Festival of Colors on Saturday morning in the South Quad.
Olivia Swenson-Hultz
Students dance to traditional Indian tunes at Holi: the Festival of Colors on Saturday morning in the South Quad.

Rohan Mehta, a sustainable energy graduate student, said Holi is supposed to fall on the day after the first full moon and is recognized as one of the most popular festivals in India.

Mehta said students from all different regions of India were celebrating at the festival as well as students from other countries.

“It was crazy. Many of us used to really enjoy doing this in India so it’s nice students get the chance to celebrate this right here at Eastern,” Mehta said.

Jaismeen Dua, a clinical psychology graduate student who moved to the U.S. from New Delhi, India last fall, stopped to rest after being hit with a handful of colors.

“For me, celebrating Holi is a tradition. Everyone’s so involved and engaged. It’s much better than I expected it to be in the U.S. I actually like it more here because it can get a lot more brutal in India. There can be mobs of people that will throw each other into the mud. Picture this but ten times worse” Dua said.

Owura Kuffuor, an international graduate assistant, said he helped to organize Holi.

“I’m excited that we could do something like this so early in the morning and that so many students came out to have fun,” he said.

Sukumar Burla, a graduate student in technology, said he was having fun celebrating with other students who had not experienced Holi before.

“I’m so happy to share my tradition with other countries. In India we used to only play with people we knew so it’s fun being able to participate in a bigger group,” Burla said.

Olivia Swenson-Hultz can be reached at 217-581-2812 or [email protected]