Festival Of District
Holi is celebrated on the full moon day in the month of Phalguna (Feb-March). Holi in
Braja is celebrated for several days, at different places around Braja, before the actual
day of Holi.
People throw colored powdered dye and colored water on each other. This is joyfully
celebrated in Braja, especially at Varsana, Nandagram and Dauji. In Varsana the festival
includes colorful processions with music, song, dance, and some boisterous scenes around
the temples. If you go to these festivals you should expect to be totally covered in dye
and never to be able to use the clothes that you are wearing again, at least until next
year's festival. This is celebrated at the same time as Gaura Purnima.
Places Holi Is celebrated
Varsana Groups of visitors go around in small and large groups here. In the
afternoon gopas (men) from Nandagram come to Varsana and play Holi with the local gopis
(women) of Varsana. The women hit the men hard with 2 ½m (7ft) long bamboo staffs. The
men have shields which they protect themselves with. During this time local songs are
sung. This festival is celebrated on the ninth day of the month of Phalguna (Feb-March).
Nandagram The day after the Holi festival at Varsana, Holi is celebrated in
Nandagram. The gopas (men) from Varsana come to Nandagram to play Holi with the gopis
(women) there. The flag of the Larily Lal Temple in Varsana is carried in an elaborate
procession to Nandagram. At this time the residents of Nandagram attempt to capture the
flag, but their attempts are foiled. After this, women play Holi with bamboo staffs. This
festival is celebrated on the tenth day (dasami) of the month of Phalguna (Feb-March).
Phalen On the full moon night in Feb/March a huge bon-fire is burned. One of the
local priests walks through the fire unscathed. One story about Holi is that Prahlada
Maharaja refused to worship his father and wanted to worship his father's enemy, Lord
Vishnu instead. His father's sister Holika, who was immune to being burned, sat with the
boy in a big fire. Prahlada's devotion was so great that Holika was burnt to death and
Prahlada was unharmed. The Holi festival at Phalen re-enacts this event.
Dauji (Baldeo) The festival here is a pretty wild event. Women pore buckets of
colored water on the men. The men are also thrashed with whips made of cloth, which has
been torn apart from men's clothing. The men can not touch the bodies of the women or
unveil their faces. From the roof of the temple; basketfuls of colored powder are emptied
on participants and onlookers, creating a thick haze of colors.