Sunday brought rain and wind and chill—theoretically, a solid backdrop for the 31st annual Phagwah Parade, a celebration intended to "chase away the winter grays" with a full-blown color fight. In practice, though, the wintry weather worked like a wet blanket on the revelry.
Phagwah (or Holi) occurs on the Sunday after the first full moon in the Hindu calendar every year and invites participants to splatter one another with dye and baby powder. This year, however, the rain turned the hyper-pigmented powder to paint, making a reliably rambunctious and exuberant occasion extra messy. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but this year's cold tested participants' resolve. According to photographer Gretchen Robinette, the weather cut everything short, including the traditional parade.
"People stuck it out as long as possible, but it became miserable, it was so wet and cold," Robinette said. "The rain came down even harder and got super windy and was blowing everything around" by 3 p.m., she added, prompting people to abandon ship. "At this point my hands and feet were frozen and I was totally soaking wet, I couldn't even hold my camera."
Still, as you'll see from the photos, celebrants made the most of a grim forecast, smearing everyone and everything with vibrant color.