|Thursday, April 25, 2013|
Local Residents Get a Taste of India at ODU Festival
Thousands of area residents flocked to the Ted Constant Convocation Center April 21 for Old Dominion's 7th annual Taste of India festival, one of the largest Asian Indian festivals held every year in Virginia.
Visitors enjoyed a full day of fun with live music, dances, ethnic food and vendor booths, as the region's strong Indian heritage was celebrated.
The Asian Indian community plays an important role in the Hampton Roads region, said Vinod Agarwal, ODU professor of economics and one of the event's organizers. "This community is represented by over 140 physicians, 50 Ph.D. scientists and engineers, many hotel and small-business owners, and numerous software and IT professionals," he noted. "Old Dominion University alone has about 30 professors of Asian Indian descent."
It's estimated that the Asian Indian diaspora contributes $140 million annually to the local economy.
This year's Taste of India - sponsored by ODU, Towne Bank, Inside Business, The Virginian-Pilot, Charles Barker Automotive and Chesapeake Regional Medical Center - featured Bollywood dances, a Bhangra dance competition and hourly door prizes. Bhangra is a traditional Punjabi folk dance.
Photos by David Hollingsworth