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India Culture Foundation Celebrates Annual Garba

PARSIPPANY — India Culture Foundation hosted their highly anticipated annual Garba on Friday, October 13, and Saturday, October 14, as well as this past Friday and Saturday at Parsippany Hills High School.

The event commenced at 9:30 p.m. and concluded at 2:30 a.m., featuring live music, delicious food, and vibrant dance performances. During the initial two hours, attendees crowded into the gymnasium and danced to traditional Garba songs. Following a 30-minute break, another hour of dancing ensued, and the festivities concluded with another hour of energetic dance.

Attendees dance and enjoy

For those unfamiliar with it, Garba is a traditional Indian dance form that takes center stage during Navratri, a nine-night Hindu festival celebrated with fasting, devotion, and prayer. This lively festival, rooted in the worship of the goddess Durga, combines dance, music, and devotion.

Students gather in the cafeteria to cool down and chat

During Garba celebrations, participants don brightly adorned traditional outfits, often forming circles, and whirl to the rhythmic beats of traditional songs. Dandiya Raas, a dance involving sticks, is another integral part of the festivities. Navratri and Garba symbolize the triumph of good over evil, with the dance representing the eternal cosmic dance of goddess Durga. The festival fosters community unity, provides a platform for cultural expression, and strengthens spiritual connections among participants. Garba celebrations are not only an occasion to honor Maa Durga but also an opportunity to invite others, share Indian traditions, create memorable moments with friends, and relish delicious food!

PHHS Students Jalen Mui, Devin Patel, and Daniel Janevski pose in traditional kurtas

The Hills’ Garba celebration is one of many in our area. Other high schools, such as Parsippany High School, South Brunswick High School, and Montville High School, also held their own celebrations.

Many temples organized their Garba events, including Vrajdham Temple, which caters to the Vaishnav community and others. They put in tremendous effort to make it a special experience, as depicted in the images below.

The final day of Garba, known as the Sharad Purnima Raas Garba, is the biggest festival of the year for the Indian community. In sum, Garba is truly an exciting must-attend event, and if you missed it this year, mark your calendars for next year!

Vrata pictured above dancing
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