First ever Himachal Day in USA was held at Milpitas (California) on June 14, celebrating rich culture and heritage of Himachal Pradesh state of India.
It brought few hundred Himachalis and friends of Himachal Pradesh together at India Community Center (ICC) to enjoy Himachali dances, culinary delicacies, music, folk fashions, displays, etc. ICC has dedicated June as Himachal Month and is holding displays of Himachali crafts, paintings, pictures, etc., showcasing its cultural heritage.
Rajan Zed was honored on the occasion and was presented with a Himachali shawl and a Himachali topi, handed over by Vice Mayor of City of Cupertino Kris Wang. Zed read the first Hindu opening prayer in United States Senate in Washington DC.
Coordinating committee, which organized this colorful event, included Mahesh Nihalani, Asha Sharma, Colonel Vishnu Sharma, Dr. Meena Patyal, who collaborated with My Himachal to organise the event.
My Himachal is an award winning 501(c)(3)A charitable, non-profit, non-governmental organization, made up of people of Himachal origin and friends of Himachal Pradesh worldwide.
Every year My Himachal organizes health Mela in Kullu and Spiti valleys of Himachal and provide scholarships to deserving students. My Himachal coordinated with Himachal government for the event and also brought its members to help plan it.
Dr. Meena Patyal, My Himachal’s Vice President and Mahesh Nihalani, advisor were in forefront to organise the event.
Organizers plan to hold it every April. Ash Kalra, Councilmember of City of San Jose; Sandra James, former Mayor of City of Cupertino; and Steven Ting, President of Rotary Club of Cupertino; also attended.
Event included Himachal Group Song lead by Kanta Sud, â€œAn American in Gandhi’s India book introduction by Asha Stokes Sharma, Gaddi Folk Dance by Uma Chitlapatti and others, Chamba Folk Songs by Yamini Mitter, Lahaul & Spiti folk dance by Sumaswara and others, Himachali Duet Song by Kanta and Sushma Sud, Himachali Costume Display and Dance by children (Aanya Sood, Diti Kohli, Risha Khandelwal) which was choreographed by Anupama Sood, Himachali Song by Yamini, Natti Folk Dance lead by Neelam Madaik, etc.
Lunch comprised of specialty Himachali dishes pachole, palak diyan wadiyaan, tilwale aloo, rajmah da madhra, posti babroo, pahari khichadi, and kesari chwal prepared under the direction of chef R. Rohit Singh.
Patricia Proctor, who traveled all the way from rural Nevada with her family to attend Himachal Day, described the whole experience as wonderful.