Though the weather in San Antonio has felt like springtime for most of the year, the official season has just begun. The weather is warmer, the flowers are blooming and, of course, the pollen is everywhere. Trinity students are used to enjoying the spring weather by soaking up sun at the outdoor pool or cheering on the Tigers at baseball, softball and track. But how do students in other countries celebrate?
Trinity’s Indian Student Association (ISA) will be bringing a glimpse of Indian tradition to campus this weekend by hosting an event where students will get to enjoy a springtime tradition from another culture; a bright, colorful, outdoor celebration called Holi.
“Holi is a Hindu festival celebrated all over India and it marks the beginning of spring. It’s a time when families, friends and neighbors come together to celebrate new relationships, repair any broken ones and enjoy the company of others,” said Amulya Cherala, public relations and outreach officer for ISA.
In India, Holi lasts all day and involves various religious rituals, followed by city-wide celebrations where rich, poor, men, women and children fill the streets. They ambush each other with colored water-filled balloons, water guns and dry powder. The celebration lasts into the night with music and traditional food and drinks.
ISA hosts a Trinity version of Holi every year and Cherala says that it is always a fun event for everyone who participates.
“In the past, Holi has been a very successful event. Not only does it bring the student body together, but it creates an atmosphere of celebration and cultural acceptance,” Cherala said. “Students learn about a festival that has been around for thousands of years and can take that experience with them and share it with other students.”
What makes Holi such a success that keeps students coming back year after year?
“Students can expect to eat delicious Indian snacks, listen or dance to some Bollywood tunes and, of course, throw powdered color at each other. They should make sure to wear white, or something they don’t mind getting dirty,” Cherala said.
In addition to this celebration of the beginning of spring, the Indian Student Association hosts various celebrations and events throughout the year, such as Diwali.
“Holi and other Indian traditions like Diwali are important because they encourage students to step out of their comfort zones, learn something new and participate in traditions that a large population of the Indian American community practice on an annual basis,” Cherala said. “Celebrating these festivals on campus demonstrates that our community is accepting, tolerant and excited to be a part of other cultures.”
Holi will take place from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on Sun. April 10 on Prassel Lawn.