New Brunswick Free Public Library Honored with State Library Multicultural Award

The New Brunswick Free Public Library has been chosen as a recipient of the New Jersey State Library’s Fifth Annual Multicultural Program Award.

The program submitted for consideration of this award was the library’s annual Holi Festival, an exuberant Indian festival of colors usually celebrated in March that is intended to bring people together.

Dancers perform at the New Brunswick Free Public Library’s 2017 Holi festival.

The purpose of the State Library’s Multicultural Program Award is to recognize and encourage library programs that increase understanding and promote multiculturalism in New Jersey’s public libraries. The ultimate goal of this award is for libraries to develop long-term partnerships with community organizations that result in sustainable cultural programming.

The library is proud to be recognized with this award, as it is the cultural diversity of the City of New Brunswick is one of the factors that makes it a great place to live. Through its resources and programming, the New Brunswick Free Public Library celebrates several of the cultures of our community, such as Black History Month, Chinese New Year, Cinco de Mayo and Dia De Los Muertos.

Dancers dressed for a Lion Dance are pictured outside of the New Brunswick Free Public Library during the 2018 Chinese New Year Celebration.

The library’s Ninth Holi Festival will be celebrated from 1-3 p.m. on Saturday, April 7. The day will feature temporary Indian henna tattoos called Mehndi, children’s activities, music and dance performances and a variety of Indian delicacies to taste.

The day will culminate with Holi color play, or throwing of colored powder, on the library’s front lawn.

The festival is free and open to all.

This annual event was organized in conjunction with the Rutgers Indian Graduate Students Association (RIGSA), Rutgers Hindu Students Council, and the South Asian Total Health Initiative (SATHI), and many other community partners.

Funding for this program is provided in part by the Middlesex County Board of Chosen Freeholders, The Folklife Program for New Jersey, New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Dept. of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts.

Participants parade during the 2016 Cinco De Mayo Festival.

An ornately decorated altar for the Library’s 2017 Dia De Los Muertos/Day of the Dead celebration.

For more information on community programs at the New Brunswick Free Public Library, visit www.nbfpl.org.

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