Spicing Up New Paltz

Last year, South Asian Cultural Association held its annual dinner with the theme of Bollywood through the ages.

The Taj Mahal will be coming to SUNY New Paltz in the form of a dinner with the South Asian Cultural Association (SACA). Sticking to their annual event, the organization will be holding “A Night at the Taj Mahal” in the Student Union (SU) Multi-Purpose Room on Friday, Dec. 3 at 8 p.m.

With the Taj Mahal as their theme, the room will have various decorations, as well as information about the mausoleum. The event will offer authentic Indian food provided by New Paltz Indian Restaurant.  There will also be a number of performances, including a skit, Bollywood dancers and a fashion show, modeling cultural and traditional clothes of the area.

This year in particular will hold more people, since for the first time, the dinner will be held in the SU instead of the College Terrace.

Sushma Kasinathan, a fourth-year biology major and the current president of SACA, is excited about the upcoming event. She said the organization is a way for students of South Asian descent to come together and display their cultures.

Although the organization is for everyone, it is predominantly Indian and Pakistani. However, Kasinathan said that other students come to meetings just to learn about the cultures.

“I had always been interested in my culture,” she said. “I grew up in a predominantly white neighborhood and wasn’t really influenced by Indian culture.”

The dinner is sponsored by the Asian Studies department, Jam Asia and Indian Hawks, which is an organization for Indian graduate students. Anyone who is interested can attend the free dinner, but with limited food, it will be on a first-come, first-served basis.

“Overall the events we’ve had were very successful,” said fourth-year finance major Tarun Behl. “It helps allow the New Paltz campus to see South Asian culture represented through music, culture, dancing, etc.”

The organization will also continue their meetings next semester every other Thursday, usually in rooms 408 or 414 of the SU at 8 p.m.