An Indian-American organization in Illinois kicked off India Day celebrations held recently, at an event in Naperville, Illinois, attended by elected officials, sponsors and community activists.
The non-profit organization, Indian Community Outreach (ICO), hosted a kickoff ceremony attended by more than 100 guests including Naperville Mayor Steve Chirico, as well as DuPage County Member, Naperville City Council Member, City of Aurora Alderman, Schaumburg Township Trustee Nimish Jani, Naperville Park District Chair Mike Reilly, other elected officials, sponsors, ICO advisors, and community leaders, a press release from the organization said.
This year’s India Day to celebrate India’s 71st Independence Day, will again take place at Knock Park in Naperville on August 12, and will feature a colorful parade and a concert by Bollywood rock star Sukhwinder Singh, concluding with display of fireworks, organizers said.
“India Day Celebration in a short span of just three years has become a very impressive event showcasing the Indian culture and heritage,” Mayor Chirico is quoted saying in the press release, congratulating Krishna Bansal, chairman of ICO.
ICO recently received the Illinois Bicentennial Asian American & Pacific Islander Heritage Award from Illinois State Governor Bruce Rauner for the ‘Significant Community Contributions’ and became the first Indian American organization to receive this honor. The ICO’s 2018 India Day has also been inducted as part of Illinois Bicentennial celebrations, the press release said.
Bansal said this year’s India Day would be one of the largest and best Indian American event in United States. Multiple activities are lined up from 11:00 am to 9:30 pm that include an international food court, an Indian bazaar, a children’s park, local talent show, an Indian fashion show, a parade, and a concert, all culminating in a fireworks display. Bansal urged community members and business owners to come forward and support the event.
Alderman at City of Aurora, Rick Mervine, was a special guest who emphasized the necessity of civic engagement for the Indian American Community. Patty Gustin, Naperville Councilwoman applauded ICO for its efforts and urged everyone to come forward and becoming engaged. Earlier Viral Shah, treasurer of ICO Board, spoke about the achievements of the ICO over the last 3 years. Chirag Jani, ICO board member and India Day cochair, emphasized how the event was an excellent opportunity for businesses to show case their brand and products to an audience of thousands.
The ICO was initiated by Naperville Mayor A. George Pradel as part of the mission to foster connections with residents of varied and diverse cultural backgrounds.