Students ran free and immersed themselves in color as they celebrated the start of spring and the Hindu festival Holi on Thursday evening at Lynn Eusan Park.
The festival, hosted by the Hindu Students Association and the Council of Ethnic Organizations, brought together a crowd of students to get messy and throw colored powder, known as “rang,” at each other.
“I loved it,” marketing alumna Cindy Truong said. “I originally came to campus to check out the Marketing Career Fair, but my friend convinced me to come to Holi, and it turned out to be a lot of fun. Strangers will attack you with color. I ended up meeting my friends at a bar afterwards covered with smeared color all over my face.”
In addition to Truong’s fun experience, she said she is happy with UH promoting diversity and different cultures.
“I’m glad UH shows diversity by celebrating the Holi festival,” Truong said. “It was definitely a wonderful new experience to learn and see a completely different culture.”
Political science junior Anais Landaeta said she was worried the weather might affect the festival, but she was glad it turned out well.
“This was my second time at Holi, and it was a lot of fun,” Landaeta said. “I thought the weather would somehow make it a mess, but it wasn’t like that at all — not more than the mess we we were already making, at least. I had a great time with my friends. I liked that this time it seemed more organized than last year’s.”
Health freshman Haakam Sherwani, who joined in on the event on the way to his class, said it was his first time celebrating it.
“I never got the chance to celebrate it,” Sherwani said. “Growing up, I used to have a lot of Indian friends who celebrated it. The only reason I came here was because it’s on campus.”
When reflecting upon the festival, Sherwani said he was impressed.
“I thought it was really cool. It was well organized, but then again, I’ve never been to a Holi event.”
Supply chain junior Qutbuddin Vohra agreed.
“Today was awesome,” Qutbuddin said. “It was epic, it was amazing, it was beyond any words I can say. It was color, color, color. It was more than I could ask for. I wasn’t expecting this big of a turnout. It was more than expected, and hopefully next year’s will be even bigger.”
Math and biology freshman Keziah Thomas, who learned about the event through the signs posted around campus, decided to skip class to join in on the festivities.
“I kinda skipped class today to attend it,” Thomas said. “I was getting in touch with my Indian roots. It was fun seeing everyone get really messy and have a great time.”
CEO director and French and Spanish junior Erica Tat said she loved the turnout and wanted to thank everyone who came out and helped make it happen.
“Thank you all so much for coming out to Holi 2014,” Tat said. “It was an amazing turnout, and this event would not have been possible without the CEO board, HSA board members, our fabulous volunteers and UH students for coming out.”