Lawrence Tech celebrates Diwali 2010
Friday, December 3rd, 2010
On Sunday, Nov. 7, the Division of Student Affairs and the Lawrence Tech Indian Student Association came together to celebrate the tradition of Diwali, the Festival of Lights. The evening celebration took place in the Buell Management Building atrium, RFoC and the Architecture Building gallery. It was well attended by many staff, faculty and students.
Diwali is a Hindu holiday that is celebrated culturally, regardless of faith. The celebration lasts five days and takes on various forms as different legends about the deities are honored through rituals and traditions.
The first part of the event was in the atrium, which was beautifully decorated with star shaped lanterns and murals depicting celebration and festivities. The theme was loosely based on the colors of the Indian National Flag. Several tables had been masterfully decorated with Rangoli, an art form that uses dyed sand carefully arranged to create designs. Dolly Patel and Mishi Joshi along with seven volunteers painstakingly blended sand to get the exact shades needed.
The evening began with emcees Sushant Ravi and Mishi Joshi announcing an inaugural dance by Sasikala, to mark the beginning of the ceremony. The dance was followed by a docu-drama, which depicted multi-cultural wonders of India in pictorial and dance formation addressing a wide variety of monuments holding a significant historical and mythological importance in Indian culture. Thus, each of the wonders speaks of immortal values and teaches us to live in peace and amity with an underlying immortal truth that India, the land itself, remains as the greatest wonder of all.
Following the drama was a fantastic feast in RFoC, showcasing 12 different traditional Indian dishes. The food was catered by Tawaa Restaurant in Garden City and served by ARAMARK.
Following the feast, Dean Kevin Finn and Karthik Devaraj put on a series of fireworks by the courtyard outside near the Architecture Building gallery. Fireworks and diyas (lamps) are the quintessential elements of Diwali celebrations, as they are to an American celebration on the Fourth of July, so they were much appreciated by the Indian students who are so far from home on this important holiday.
The third part of the event was lined up in the Architecture Building gallery, which was decorated with light and lanterns in the courtyard, giving out an awe of radiance to the event. The post-dinner event started with a Bollywood song by Karthik Devaraj. The song was followed by a mellow tune by Rushiraj Brahmbhatt (vocal) and Runjith Lakka (guitar). The song is about a naïve mind on its way to dream, to dance on a naïve melody and just lose oneself in the moment. The song was personified by an enchanting dance by Krithi Bhat.
The song session was concluded by the start of a traditional fashion show, which was unique due to the participation of non-Indian students in traditional Indian outfits. This event had major support from the staff and the Lawrence Tech women’s volleyball team. The outfits were sponsored by an amazing Indian clothing store, “Fashion Valley” of Garden City.
The surprise event of the evening was a Hip Hop dance by the dance group Euphoria. They were dancing to a popular Usher song, “DJ Got Us Fallin’ in Love Again.” The team members of the Euphoria dance group put in a great amount of work in practicing for the dance, meeting multiple times during the week to practice and coordinate the dance. They did an awesome job.
The night was wrapped up with a DJ rocking the dance floor with some really popular Bollywood music and disco lights. Faculty, staff, students and guests all came together to dance to the music and just have plain fun on the dance floor.
– By Bhargav Joshi, Indian Student Association President