To honor the occasion, the museum boasted a packed schedule of fun and interactive programs and activities that allowed kids and their families to learn more about the tradition and the culture that originated the festival.
“We love Holi! We went to India and read about it when we were there,” said Kim and Kevin Winther, who came from Queens to bring their three-year-old son Ronan to the festival. “We want to expose him to different cultures at a young age, so he grows up understanding that there are many cultures and ways to celebrate.”
Holi is a revered Hindu festival that is celebrated in every part of India with utmost joy and enthusiasm. Often referred to as the “festival of love,” for many Indians, it is a day to let go of all resentments towards each other. On the day of Holi, people play with colors, which symbolizes joy and attracts positivity in one’s life.
Holi celebrations, which this year was celebrated back in March, have already taken place all over New York City. But Saturday’s event was a wonderful opportunity for younger revelers to observe in safe, creative and fun ways the festival of color.
Kids began the festivities with learning about the holiday’s origin during story time. They then moved on to bollywood and bhangra dance classes, feasting and shopping at a bazaar, having their tiny hands embellished with ancient henna art — which was extremely popular, — and much more. The kids were super excited, and the parents were just as thrilled.
“If you look at it demographically, there are not a lot of Indians in Brooklyn, compared to Queens and even Long Island,” said Sam Hirematch, father of two little festival revelers. “But it is good and convenient that there’s a location here that offers cultural exposure. And that’s one of the reasons we like Brooklyn: It’s very heterogeneous. It is good to see others embracing the culture.”
The festival’s grand culmination, of course, was the traditional color powder play, the symbolic, joyful battle of good versus bad.
If you missed this year’s festival, take a look at our photos and look forward to next year, when Holi Hooray returns to spread joy and love at the Brooklyn Children’s Museum! (Photos by Gabriella Thalassites for BK Reader.)