The gloomy forecast didn’t dampen the spirits of those who turned out for “the happiest festival of New York” this past Saturday. Instead, hundreds of visitors of all ages, races and creeds gathered together on Governor Island’s Play Lawn to participate in Holi Hai, an ancient Hindu festival that’s now celebrated around the world to welcome spring. Untapped Cities contributor, Erica Price, was there to capture the magic (and mess) that unfolded throughout the day-long party.
With the Statue of Liberty and stunning Manhattan skyline as a backdrop, event goers reveled in a sea of colors — their bodies serving as canvases that caught explosions of dyed dust. Like what magically happens during most festivals, strangers quickly turned to friends, and invisible walls between groups of people were brought down.
As part of the celebration, Holi Hai also featured a diverse range of activities: there were photo and multi-cultural artisan booths, a variety of ethic food options and stations where guests could get henna art or their faces painted. Eclectic stage programming featured the talents of professional dance groups and music bands, like fitness and dance company, NYCBhangra (also the host of Holi Hai), Astoria Tap Crew, and indie-pop artist, Sheena, among many others.
To see more of the festive chaos that went down this weekend, check out the hashtags #ColorsOfDiversity, #ColorsOfNewYork, #NYCHoli, and #SpringColorFestival — though, of course, nothing beats attending and experiencing Holi Hai in person.