City Schools of Decatur hosts Diwali celebrationChildren hold up lights during City Schools of Decatur's Diwali Celebration on Oct. 28. Photo provided to Decaturish.
Decatur, GA — City Schools of Decatur celebrated Diwali, the Indian festival of lights, on Oct. 28.
This year, Diwali will be celebrated on Nov. 12. Celebrated by over a billion people worldwide, and originating in India, the festival coincides with harvest and new year celebrations, celebrates new beginnings, and the triumph of good over evil and light over darkness, according to a press release.
The event was sponsored by the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Committees of CSD, Oakhurst, Talley, Fifth Avenue, Winnona Park, and Westchester Elementary School Parent Teacher Associations. Over 200 people attended the event, which featured festivities traditionally enjoyed during Diwali, including arts and crafts activities, dance, music, and food tastings. Families made and decorated Diyas, clay lamps that light up homes during Diwali, created Rangolis, floor patterns created using chalk and colored powders, and had their hands adorned with Mehndi, which is henna.
Children and parents also received a special dance lesson from Kruti Dance Academy, featuring the Bollywood song Nattu Nattu. Parent volunteers read Diwali and fall festival centered books provided by local Decatur bookstore Brave + Kind Bookshop to children in attendance.
Volunteers including students from FAVE, Talley, and Beacon Hill Middle school along with the schools’ DEI committees provided guests with free Indian food tastings, including samosas and mithai, traditional Indian sweets. Local Indian businesses, Nathu’s Sweets & Patel Brothers, donated food as well. Naan Stop had pre-ordered meal boxes ready for pickup. Naan Stop donated part of the proceeds to Oakhurst Elementary.
Children volunteers told the crowd the story of Diwali through a narrated script, while photos of home celebrations played in the background. As dusk set in, the idea of Diwali as a celebration of “light over darkness” was realized by lighting up fire crackers, the press release states.
Organizers plan to make this event an annual gathering.
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