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FIA celebrates Festival of Colors and Food

FIA celebrates Festival of Colors and Food
May 17
11:41 2018

The FIA team that hosted Festival of Color in Oakbrook

CHICAGO: All roads in Oak Brook led to the McDonalds Soccer Fields, on May 6 to attend the Festival of Color hosted by the Federation of Indian Associations (FIA) in association with the village of Oakbrook, the first for Chicago land.

The Festival starting at 11.30 am and running to 5 pm was attended by hundreds of Holi revelers and dignitaries from all over Chicago and suburbs. About 1500 people saw the festival kicked off by the four emcee’s Geetanjali Maru, Pratibha Jairath, Jigar Shah and Saurin Thakkar. The event started with a performance by Madhura Sane and her team from the Nritya Natya Academy.

FIA Founder President Sunil Shah, President Neil Khot, Past president Onkar Singh Sangha came on the stage. Sunil Shah in his brief speech welcomed and thanked the people of Chicagoland for turning up in big numbers for the event.

Neil Khot in his speech thanked the people who turned up for their presence and support. Neil Khot then thanked specifically Dr Gopal Lalmalani – Oak Brook Village President – for their unstinted support to the event and McDonalds for their generosity in allowing the use of their soccer fields for the event and thanked all the sponsors to the event.

Dignitaries were invited to the stage starting with the Consul General of India Ms. Neeta Bhushan. Ms. Bhushan praised the efforts of the FIA for organizing different kinds of events for the Indian Diaspora in Chicagoland. Village President Gopal Lalmalani thanked the FIA for organizing the event in Oak Brook and bringing attention to Oak Brook as a Festival destination. Other dignitaries were invited on stage – Event Chair Ashok Lakshmanan, Chief Supporter Syed Hussaini, V. Malini Air India, State

Representative Michelle Mussman, Edward Tiesenga Trustee Village of Oakbrook, Asif Yusuf Trustee Village of Oakbrook, Syed Moin Trustee Village of Oakbrook, Rodney Craig, Mayor Hanover Park and Tom Daily. Founding Member Rita Singh and the entire Board of the FIA was called to the stage for an event picture.

Awards for Excellence in business and for community service were presented to eminent businessmen and people who serve the community.

After the presentation there was a blast of color by Sunil Shah and Neil Khot who were joined by CG Ms. Neeta Bhushan and Dr Gopal Lalmalani using color filled power blasters and the event was declared open. This was the cue that the crowds were waiting for, and the air was filled with colors and water as people of all ages started coloring each other. The two stilt walkers also added to the fun by throwing color at people from their vantage heights.

This was followed by a performance by the Award-Winning Funka Desi a band that blends Indian music (Bhangra, Bollywood, Folk) with Reggae, Funk, and Afro-Caribbean Grooves. The Chicago-based band’s “one-family” vibe made for an enthralling live show. This festive, virtuoso experience of cultural unity wowed the crowds through danceable grooves and brought the attendees to groove and dance.

This was followed by a performance by Bollywood Groove and many of the attendees joined them in their dance moves. An entertaining performance was by Alokita and her dance group from her dance academy Jhankaar Dance and the last performance was by SSR Chicago adult students who presented a medley on Bollywood music.

The attendees also enjoyed the great food sold at the four booths and shopping at the 25 odd booths selling different products.

Suresh Bodiwala & Krishna Raj

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