Joyful Diwali celebration held at West Orange High School

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WEST ORANGE, NJ — A light-hearted and joyful Diwali celebration was held at West Orange High School on Sept. 25, organized by United Asian Voices of West Orange.

The light rain that fell for a portion of the event did not deter the colorful and animated Bollywood and cultural performances, including mother-daughter team team Saayani and Sankhoori Patel, a fusion of Indian dance and step by the WOHS girls step team, chanting, and Indian instrumental music. 

High school students emceed the event as various exhibitions were placed around the field. Indian food was for sale, along with incense, clothing and jewelry. The WOHS language clubs were on site to participate in the festivities as well. 

The five-day festival begins with Dhanteras on Saturday, Oct. 22, and ends with Bhai Dooj on Wednesday, Oct. 26. Diwali will be celebrated Monday, Oct. 24, or the 15th day of the month of Kartika, as per the Hindu calendar.

Diwali, also known as Deepavali, originates from the Sanskrit word dipavali, meaning “row or series of lights.”

The “Festival of Lights,” as Diwali is also known, is considered one of the most significant events on the Indian calendar. Diwali celebrates the triumph of light over darkness and good over evil, symbolized by the lighting of lamps in homes, temples, shops and buildings around the world, ushering in the Indian new year.

Photos Courtesy of WOSD