Come October, the weather starts whistling about it, the markets get brighter, the roads more congested, and there’s a happy feeling that sets in all our hearts, air whispering, “Diwali is just around the corner”!
The biggest of all festivals in India, Diwali, is celebrated every year on the 15th day of the Hindu month of Kartika, as per the lunar Hindu calendar. According to the Gregorian calendar, it typically occurs in October or November.
Diwali is also known as “Deepawali” or “the festival of lights”.
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Significance of Diwali
This day commemorates the return of Lord Ram, his wife Sita and brother Lakshman from their 14-year-long exile to their kingdom, Ayodhya.
To celebrate their return and welcome them, the people of Ayodhya illuminated the streets and their homes with earthen lamps (diyas), and burst firecrackers. Since then, the tradition follows. People clean their homes, wear new clothes, pray to Lord Ganesha and Goddess Lakshmi for well-being and prosperity. Firecrackers are burst to ward off evil forces.
Diwali Invitations and Greetings
For Hindus, Diwali marks the beginning of a new year. It is a common tradition to send Diwali greetings on this day via post/email or SMS to friends and family. If you are hosting a Diwali party in your society or at your place, you can either go for printed invitations, or for paperless e-invitations sent via email to all your guests or extend the invitation via Social Media like Facebook, Twitter. Make sure to include the date, time and location for the event and emphasize the theme and mood of the Diwali party in the invitation.
Diwali Party Themes, Decorations and Music
- Garden Party Theme for Diwali
- Casino Theme for Diwali
- Ethnic – Rajasthani / Maharashtrian / Punjabi Theme for Diwali
- Color Theme – Red, Black, Green, Golden, Yellow or a combination of 2 colors
- Daandiya Dance Party
- Bollywood Dance Party with DJ or dhol
- Potluck Party
Plan your decorations with the theme in mind. Twinkling lights on the venue are very much in sync with Diwali. Consider adorning the entrance with torans, floating flower petals and candles in terracotta pots, use bandhani (multi-colored Rajasthani) drapes on doors/windows or the main wall. Twinkling lights on outdoor and indoor plants are sure to add a sparkle to the atmosphere. Make Rangolis at the entrance and also near your prayer place, ‘mandir’. Spray a nice perfumed air freshener too if you like.
For music, play soft instrumental music, like a light sitar or santoor. You could also engage a guy to play soft jal tarang unless it is a dance party involving a DJ.
Diwali Party Menu
Based on the theme and timing of your party, plan the menu much in advance.
Include drinks, finger foods, main course and desserts that can be prepared mostly ahead of the party. If you plan to engage a caterer then you do not need to worry about preparing ahead of time.
You can also design a potluck type of dinner where each of the guests would have to bring one of their own signature dishes. As a host, you’ll need to keep a track of “who is bring what” so that a balance between main dishes, appetizers, and desserts can be attained.
A traditional North-Indian Menu
Poori / Kachori
Moong Dal Halwa
Diwali Party Games
Amongst a multitude of choices, here are a few popular games to choose from:
- Tambola. How to play Tambola
- Card games like bridge, blackjack, rummy, etc.
- Casino games with cards, casino chips, and dice
- Musical games like Antakshari, musical chairs.
- Competitive group games like ‘lighting diyas/candles’, ‘making rangolis’, etc. in the given time limits.
- Ethnic Dress Competition (walking on a ramp).
- Drawing Competition for kids (or specify the different age-groups if you prefer).
Diwali Party Favors
Here are a few ideas to choose from:
– decorated diyas
– floating candles
– dry fruits
– silver idols of Goddess Lakshmi and Lord Ganesha
– silver aarti ki thali (platter used to pray)
– decorative wall or door hangings
– assorted gift baskets containing a mix of chocolates, dry fruits, juices, jams, etc.
Wrap the gifts you choose, in a beautiful creative way. And don’t forget to label them with – Shubh Deepawali
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- Celebrating Dhanteras – The Festival of Wealth and Prosperity
- Bhai Dooj – A Brother-Sister Festival of India
- Interesting Facts about Govardhan Puja
Have you sent out invitations for your upcoming event? If not, save paper and send free online invitations now.
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