What is Diwali?
Diwali is a festival of lights and one of the major celebrations in India.
The festival lasts for five days and includes various types of celebrating depending on the region.
An important part of the festival is puja (prayer) that differs from one place to another as people worship multiple gods and goddesses.
Overall, the festival symbolizes the winning of the light over the darkness.
During Diwali, people decorate their houses with Rangoli and set fireworks.
Indian community at Teesside
The Teesside area has a large Indian community.
There are plenty of events such as Navaratri, Holi, and Diwali that are widely celebrated across this region.
Apart from lots of Indian families around here, Teesside University welcomes hundreds of international students from India every intake.
Teesside University Indian Society has always been one of the most active communities.
Students celebrate almost every Hindu festival and invite other students of different nationalities to join their events and familiarize themselves with another culture.
Recently, the Indian Society has organized Navaratri and Diwali celebrations in the SU Hub that met with a lot of success.
Diwali in Middlesbrough Town Hall
Since there are so many people coming from India in Middlesbrough, Kash Patel, the founder of Kash Patel Productions, brought the Diwali festival to Middlesbrough for the first time.
The event originally was going to take place at MIMA square in the town centre, however, due to the weather conditions it had to be moved to an inside space. The Town Hall opened its door for the public at 12 pm.
The celebrations started from a prayer.
The event included various dance and music performances.
Lots of people enjoyed and danced to the rhythms of bhangra beats too.
Apart from the music performances, the audience had a chance to see beautiful traditional Indian dance performed by Maher Girls Raas Group.
Diwali was promoted as a free family event so there were a lot of fun attractions for kids as well.
Children enjoyed the Rangoli workshops, face painting, and making lanterns.
Moreover, there were a lot of stalls inside where you could purchase colourful saree and jewellery.
In the outside area, people were gathering to have some hot Indian street food and sweets.
Even though the weather conditions didn’t allow for the festival to be held outdoors, the event met with a lot of success.
There were a couple of thousands of people that showed up throughout the day.
Just twenty-four hours before the event, Kash Patel had to reorganize everything and move the festival indoors.
The original plan included fanfare, 3m tall muppets, and fireworks.
Unfortunately, no one can control the weather, however, Kash Patel Productions coped fantastically well under these circumstances and delivered an amazing event.