Celebrated worldwide, Holi, the traditional Indian holiday is known for its vibrant powder colours that blanket people in the streets. As one of the major Indian festivals, wherever Holi is celebrated, the spirit of the event remains the same. It’s a day to forgive, forget, reconnect, and enjoy time with family and friends.
The throwing of colours stems from an Indian story about baby Krishna who had dark blue skin. Krishna worried that Radha, who had fair skin, would not like him. His mother told him to colour her face in any colour he wanted. He did and they became a couple. Colours also symbolise people becoming equals, whether they are friends, foes, family or strangers. At the original Christchurch event you had to be prepared to get colourful! Anyone is fair game – it’s an all-out colour war. The powder colours used at Holi will wash off skin with soap and water but it’s best to wear old clothes. Wearing white makes the colours really stand-out.
The event’s carnival atmosphere includes music, performances and traditional games, such as Matki Phod where competitors make a human pyramid to reach and then break a clay pot.
Once the crowd has worked up an appetite, it’s time to indulge in Holi delicacies. Food stalls with traditional Indian cuisine will be onsite throughout the event. Holi is celebrated on the full moon day in March each year.
The Christchurch Holi festival of Colour was started by Hitesh Sharma (Revel Events) and Sandeep Khanna in 2015. The Rangiora Festival of Colour has taken inspiration from the Christchurch and Worldwide events in order to celebrate our regions diverse and fascinating nature!