Indian festival of lights set to dazzle from iconic One World Center to White House
The iconic One World Center in the big apple will be lit up in Diwali-themed animation for eight hours for three nights as America gets set to celebrate the Indian festival of lights from East to West coast.
President Joe Biden, who has appointed a record number of Indian Americans in his administration, and the First Lady Dr Jill Biden will celebrate the festival at the White House on Oct 24, the Diwali day itself with prominent members of the Indian community.
Read: New York World Trade Center to be lit up for All-American Diwali (November 2, 2021)
Indian American Vice President Kamala Harris and her husband Douglas Emhoff are hosting a Diwali party at her Naval Observatory residence in Washington on Friday.
Secretary of State Tony Blinken is hosting another Diwali party at the State Department with the diplomatic community on Oct 26. Diwali is also being celebrated at the US Capitol with several leading lawmakers joining.
Former president Donals Trump has also invited around 200 Indian-Americans members of the Republican Hindu Coalition to celebrate Diwali at his residence in Mar-a-Lago, Florida on Friday night. The event is set to feature Bollywood dances and Indian dishes.
New York City Mayor Eric Adams kicked off this year’s Diwali celebrations in Times Square on Oct 15 with hundreds of Indian American community members joining.
The event was also attended by Senator Chuck Schumer, India’s Consul General in New York Randhir Jaiswal and NY State Assembly member Jennifer Rajkumar.
Read: Key US lawmakers introduce bill to make Diwali a federal holiday (November 4, 2021)
“We acknowledge Diwali, and we need to acknowledge the power of women and the significant role women play in our country, in our city. Let’s continue to lift our women as we lift up our country – our city,” said Adams.
“We love our community, our Indian community, and we love that we all come together here in New York with our diversity,” said Schumer.
“Every year, we celebrate Diwali in Times Square but this year, it is somewhat different. It happens to be part of India’s 75th year of Independence,” said Jaiswal.
Diwali-themed animation on the façade of the One World Center from Oct 22 to 24 from from 6 pm to 2 am has been organized by the South Asian Engagement Foundation with the Durst Organization.
Named the All-American Diwali, the celebration is dedicated to New York’s finest. SAEF plans to honor them through its social media posts.
SAEF says its work is dedicated to building a strong brand for the Indian American community by empowering them and catalyzing the conversation around Indian Americans.
New York State Governor Kathy Hochul hosted the state’s first-ever gubernatorial Diwali celebration on Oct 12 underlining the festival’s message of unity, light, and prosperity.
Read: Diwali will be honored as an official holiday in New York City schools (October 21, 2022)
“In New York, we all know that diversity is truly our greatest strength. So having your governor celebrate with our South-Asian, Indo-Caribbean communities, our Hindu, Sikh, Jain, and Buddhist New Yorkers, it’s just long overdue. It’s about time we all came together,” she said
Diwali parties are also being organized at State Capitols and Governors’ Houses in several other states.