Gallery: Nearly 70K attend Holi colour festival in Spanish Fork, Utah

Published: March 29, 2014


Picture 1 of 13

A reveler is covered in colored corn starch during the 2014 Festival of Colors, Holi Celebration at the Krishna Temple Saturday, March 29, 2014, in Spanish Fork, Utah. AP Photo/Rick Bowmer

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

SPANISH FORK, Utah — Tens of thousands of people gathered Saturday at a Sri Sri Radha Krishna Temple in Spanish Fork for the start of an annual two-day festival of colours.

Revelers danced to music, practiced yoga and threw colored corn starch in the air once every hour during the all-day Holi Festival of Colors.

The large majority of participants are not Hindus, but Mormons, The Salt Lake Tribune reported (http://bit.ly/1inARs3 ). Thousands of students from nearby Brigham Young University take part in the festival, which expected to draw 70,000 people.

The event stems from a Hindu tradition celebrating the end of winter and the triumph of good over evil.

“It’s an opportunity for young LDS (Mormon) kids to come and celebrate their spirituality without alcohol or drugs,” said Caru Das, the temple’s priest.

Das said the event feels more like a rock concert than a religious ceremony, particularly with live music. He appeared frequently on stage, exhorting crowd members to give hugs to strangers and not to think of themselves as ordinary.

“Each and every one of you is lovely and brilliant. No exceptions,” he said. “This festival is to remind you who you are.”

The festival gives participants a chance to gain exposure to Hindu chants and beliefs while plastering others with dust of many vibrant colours that costs $3 per bag or $12 for five bags. The hourly throwing of rainbow-hued corn starch leaves participants drenched in colour.

“It’s a place for your inner child to come out,” Robynn Kirkham, a Pleasant Grove accountant who runs a construction company, told The Tribune.

Ranjan Khurana and his wife, Anu, came from Boise, Idaho, because friends in the Spanish Fork Hindu congregation raved about how electrifying the event has become.

“It’s vibrant and everybody is just so cheerful,” Anu Khurana said. “It’s a blessing that so many people are here celebrating the colours.”

Haylee Buchanan, a BYU student, said she has attended the event with friends and likened it to a big party.

“I wish that I could have read information on why and what they are celebrating,” she said, “because it was fascinating.”

Buchanan said it was enjoyable to immerse herself in a cultural event very different from her own Mormon faith.

Indra Neelameggham, a Hindu who worships at Sri Ganesha Temple in South Jordan, said she doesn’t mind if young Mormons partake in the festival.

“This festival has no religious significance. There are no prayers or no special services connected with it,” she said. “It has evolved in India — particularly in the south — over the years and now is mostly about tourism and marketing — like Christmas or Halloween.”

Das said the event is spiritual and many attendees feel moved, but the heavy presence of young Mormons doesn’t dampen the event. The festival unites strangers in a common experience, he said.

——

Information from: The Salt Lake Tribune, http://www.sltrib.com

21:24ET 29-03-14

[+]

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,



Readers Comments (0)

Comments are closed.

Featured

Pakistan

Pakistani girl gunned down by uncle over loud music

VANCOUVER DESI A 16-year-old girl from Pakistan is dead after she was gunned down by her uncle for refusing to turn down loud music, according…
Continue Reading »

desi hiker

This is the picture a South Asian hiker took of a 135-kg black bear. A few minutes later, it killed him

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS A New Jersey hiker killed by a bear in September took a series of photos of the animal with his cellphone before…
Continue Reading »

Badaun suicide

Indian investigators say two sisters found hanging from a tree were not murdered or gang raped

HINDUSTAN TIMES The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has concluded after a five-month probe that the two teenaged Badaun cousins had committed suicide, putting to…
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

domestic violence South Asian Surrey

Alex Sangha: Five step plan to curb domestic violence in the South Asian community

ALEX SANGHA SPECIAL TO VANCOUVER DESI There have been a number of high profile murders in the South Asian community in Surrey over the years. …
Continue Reading »

Surrey crash-desi

Surrey crash victim’s son says deporting parolee would ‘send a message’

TOM ZYTARUK SURREY NOW SURREY — A Surrey man who killed an elderly man when he smashed his brother’s Corvette into a Surrey bus shelter…
Continue Reading »

Islamophobia

Stereotyping is alive and well when it comes to Muslim and Sikh religious symbols in Canada

GORDON MCINTYRE VANCOUVER DESI One-third of British Columbians believe radicalized people live among us, according to a poll commissioned by The Province. The survey of…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

10413566DESI

University confessions Facebook pages can show the hardships of college life in B.C. (w/video)

NICK EAGLAND VANCOUVER DESI “Today I decided that I would start studying for finals,” an anonymous student wrote to the UBC Confessions Facebook page on…
Continue Reading »

terrorism

Dharm Makwana: Presumed guilty until you miss your flight

  DHARM MAKWANA VANCOUVER DESI By the end of the ordeal my wife was on the verge of tears. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection…
Continue Reading »

suffer in silence

Help for Victims of Sexual Abuse

NIRMALA RANIGA VANCOUVER DESI The reasons for not reporting incidents of sexual abuse or harassment are many and varied. Recently, we have addressed some of…
Continue Reading »

cricket-terrorism-Belgium

Pakistani cricketer labeled terrorist for carrying bat on public transport, deported from Belgium

VANCOUVER DESI A young Pakistani cricketer and his family have been forced out of Belgium after he was labeled a terrorist for carrying his cricket…
Continue Reading »

wild pets

Two “snake catchers” arrested in India for illegally keeping venomous pets

VANCOUVER DESI Two men in Southern India who are known as local “snake catchers” have been arrested and thrown in jail for illegally keeping venomous…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

Junior Lata-Bollywood-song-music

Video of 11-year-old girl singing Bollywood song ‘Satyam Shivam Sundaram’ goes viral

VANCOUVER DESI A video of a 11-year-old Indian girl singing Lata Mangeshkar’s Bollywood song Satyam Shivam Sundaram has gone viral on social media and drawn…
Continue Reading »

sex video-Pakistan-Bollywood

Bollywood actress Veena Malik and her husband sentenced to 26 years in jail for blasphemy

IANS Dubai – Controversial Bollywood actress Veena Malik has expressed “shock” at a Pakistan court sentencing her and her husband, among others, to 26 years…
Continue Reading »

Desi sex

Bollywood’s Emraan Hashmi says he never refused to work with Canadian pornstar Sunny Leone (w/gallery)

IANS Mumbai – Emraan Hashmi denies that he refused to work with adult film star Sunny Leone for a special song in “Ungli”. In fact,…
Continue Reading »