On Friday, students were seen walking around campus, covered in colorful powder to welcome spring to Fairfield.
According to holifestival.org, Holi is an annual springtime tradition of colors that takes place in India. The Hindu tradition was first organized hundreds of years ago and is still celebrated in India today. The celebration is known as the festival of colors. The meaning behind the celebration in India is to teach mankind to transcend above religion and social class. Great warmth and high spirits are meant to come from the festival in order to forget old grievances in one’s life.
Junior Jasmine Raghunandan, president of the South Asian Student Association believed that Holi, “touches upon interest. It’s also perfect for stress relief. You’re outside, playing games, listening to music that mixes between American and Indian/Punjabi, dancing, you’re celebrating with your friends and you have a reason to act silly during a time that is right before something that is unbearably stressful [finals].”
According to Raghunandan, Holi is a perfect opportunity to hang out with friends outside and forget about schoolwork for an afternoon. “It’s something that previous students have looked forward to and new students get to experience for the first time,” said Raghunandan.
During a round in the festival of colors, students gathered in a circle around a pile of powdered paint. After the countdown, the powder was picked off the ground, ripped open and thrown on anyone within reach.
Sophomore Marcus DeSouto felt that Holi was “an amazing experience, it really immerses you in a culture and a tradition that most students aren’t very exposed to. I think that it’s something really important that everyone should go to.”
Despite how little students may know about the celebration, Raghunandan felt that attending Holi is a great way to expose the University to another culture. “Students leave Holi with an appreciation for the culture and festivities. The fact that we get to bring something that is very specific to Indian culture and that everyone looks forward to as a tradition at Fairfield is amazing to me,” said Raghunandan.
In addition to providing an afternoon full of color and amusement, the event allowed students to come together. “I think students leave feeling as if they are part of a bigger community than they may have initially realized. There’s something about the event that truly brings people together and I think the event allows people to grow closer as a community,” said Raghunandan.
The event brought both tradition and community to the campus, making it inviting to both underclassmen and upperclassmen. “It was a great way to end my year, I’ve always wanted to do Holi for the past two or three years. This year was finally my opportunity to go and it was one of the best events to close my year with,” said Alicia Brizzolara ‘16.
For Alex Mongillo ‘16, Holi “is one of those events that I’ve always heard of that I wasn’t sure if I would ever go to. I regret not going in past years. It was a lot of fun and in addition, I was able to make some new friends. It goes to show the cool events that Fairfield has to offer for incoming students.”