By: Ella Polynice
The Desi Club hosted an unforgettable Mock Shaadi, a simulated Indian or Pakistani wedding, at the Warren Ballroom Nov. 10. Despite some delays in the schedule, the event proved to be a resounding success, offering attendees a delightful immersion into the rich cultural traditions of a South Asian wedding.
The anticipation started building as attendees gathered outside the ballroom at 6:30 p.m., only to discover that the opening time had been pushed back to 7 p.m. Subsequently, the time changed again to 7:30, creating some more waiting time. However, the atmosphere shifted once inside, with cultural Desi music, vibrant decorations, a photo wall and a henna station creating an engaging environment.
The night officially commenced at 8 p.m. with a traditional Haldi ceremony, infusing the venue with joy and energy. Attendees enthusiastically participated by smearing turmeric paste on the two couples’ faces. The program continued with a competitive game of musical chairs, a well-executed dance performance by the Desi Club board and an entertaining paper dance competition, the prize of which was Legos.
The spotlight then turned to the couples of the night: Arshita Pandey and Ananda Lalloo and Zainab Kapasi and Aneesha Baloch, showcasing the diversity and inclusivity of the event. Notably, the representation of a same-sex couple, a practice not legally recognized in any South Asia country, added a special touch to the celebration.
“My mind just kept telling me that it’s kind of sad to think about it like this, but this is probably something I’ll probably never get to see in real life in my own country, and it sucks. So, this is why, from the start, I believed in this project. And I don’t care who was going to laugh at us or who was going to make fun of us because this means something to me,” Pandey said. “Thank you for being so accepting. Thank you for being so open-minded. And we hope to see your continued love and support.”
Following the events, attendees were treated to a scrumptious feast featuring traditional Pakistani cuisine, including biryani, chicken curry, spring rolls and naan. The flavors were a true delight, adding to the overall cultural experience.
The event’s success was celebrated with heartfelt speeches. Saanvi Moryani, the president of the Desi Club, expressed gratitude to everyone involved, including the photographer, tech services, event host Shahad Monir and the catering team from Chartwells. The couples received a special acknowledgment, as did the hardworking event organizers and the attendees.
Pandey took a moment to reflect on the club’s journey, from its inception in fall 2022 to the realization of the Mock Shaadi. She shared her passion for the project, emphasizing its cultural significance and the importance of community support.
The Mock Shaadi organized by the Desi Club not only showcased the vibrancy of South Asian wedding traditions but also demonstrated the club’s commitment to fostering inclusivity and cultural appreciation on campus. The event’s success serves as a testament to the hard work and dedication of the Desi Club and leaves attendees eagerly anticipating future cultural celebrations.