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USA Local Color Courtesy Of Hola Mohalla At Livingston Sikh Festival

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USA Local Color Courtesy Of Hola Mohalla At Livingston Sikh Festival

Harry Haller

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LIVINGSTON — The clouds parted ways and the sun shined down upon the city of Livingston on Sunday, as thousands of people turned out for the city’s 16th annual Sikh Festival.

Officially known as the Hola Mohalla festival, the event kicked off at noon at the Gurdwara Sahib Temple at 2765 Peach Ave. From there, a parade moved along Main Street to the Guru Nanak Temple on B Street.

Hola Mohalla, translated as mock fight, is an Indian tradition that dates back more than 300 years. In the 1700s, Sikhs marched from town to town, showing off their fighting skills for crowds of onlookers.

Today, in the Valley, the parade carries much of its traditional flavor, but all are encouraged to attend as a way to experience the local Sikh culture.

On the parade route, participants wear a variety of colorful garments and clothes. Big rigs, decorated from front to back with ornaments and streamers, drive along the route as musicians play a variety of cultural songs.

Many participants bring food and candy to share with others along the way. Additional highlights of the festival included displays of mock battles and swordsmanship.

Sikhism is a religion that was founded in India. It has 27 million followers, and more than 5 million live outside India. Sikhs make up nearly 20 percent of Livingston’s population.

Read more here: http://www.mercedsunstar.com/2014/03/30/3576579/local-color-courtesy-of-hola-mohalla.html#storylink=cpy
 

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