Holi 2024

Category : 2024 , Holi

It’s a Holi lot of fun!

Spring is here and in the Hindu calendar, this marks the beautiful festival of Holi!

Holi, otherwise known as the ‘festival of colours’  definitely doesn’t go unnoticed. In India, with the streets full to the brim of joyous laughter, strangers throwing powdered colours (Gulaal) at each other and wishing every person you meet a ‘Happy Holi!’, we’re certainly missing out in the UK.

The festival is to celebrate the eternal and divine love of the deities Radha and Krishna. Additionally, the day signifies the triumph of good over evil, as it commemorates the victory of Vishnu as Narasimha over Hiranyakashipu. The day before Holi is used to commemorate Holika, the sister of Hiranyakashipu who believed her powers could overcome her nephew Prahlad’s godly manifestation of Lord Vishnu. A large bonfire is lit with religious prayers and songs to observe this festival.

Here in the UK, the Gujarat Hindu Society and Cuerden Valley Park (a local nature reserve in Preston) teamed up to welcome spring and the festival of Holi by holding a Holi Colour Run…. with a twist! Colour runs have been done before and are a huge celebration in the Hindu faith and Indian culture, however, the unique part of this one is the promotion of the environment. Cuerden Valley Park grows wildflower meadows to keep the nature reserve alive for the animals that reside there and a part of this colour run will involve throwing some community made ‘seed bombs’ to promote growth.

Held on 10th March 2024 at Cuerden Valley Park, the day was filled with ethnic food, crafts, music, cultural dance with a vibrant community feel. Around 250 participants took part in the colour run with volunteers from the GHS dutifully throwing colours at various stations as the runners came past. The run was complimented by BBC Radio Lancashire who were on hand  interviewing runners and organisers with a live feed. Music was on hand by the wonderful Desi by Nature, temple cooked fresh food by our volunteers at the temple, talented henna artists, crafts by ArteeCrafts and classical dancers from the Abhinandana Dance Academy were on hand for a fun-filled day!

Proceeds from the event went to the Cuerden Park Nature Reserve and to the Gujarat Hindu Society charity. The feedback from participants and spectators were overwhelmingly positive with gratitude for learning about Holi, being able to participate in a unique event like this in Lancashire and meeting the wider community in Preston. We hope to hold another event next year, stay tuned!

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