Ganesh Chaturthi Celebrations in Mumbai
Life In Enjoyment Lane
Maharashtra is probably the most culturally active state in the whole of India. And the credit of this goes to the people of India who are truly vibrant and lively lot. No wonder then that the festivals of Maharashtra would be occasions of magnificent and unhindered celebrations. Most part of the year, Maharashtra is immersed in the enthusiasm of festivals. Even before a festival is over, preparations for the next one are already on way; so close are all the festivals in this state. Most splendid of all religious festivals is the Ganesh Chaturthi celebrated around the month of August. Apart from all the religious festivals, Maharashtra is known for many cultural festivals like Pune Festival and Elephanta cave festival where one can witness the amalgamation of music, dance and drama.
Celebrates in the month of August-September, Ganesh Chaturthi is the most important festival in Maharashtra. This is a 11 day festival that marks the birth of Lord Ganesha, keeps the people of Maharashtra engaged in its preparations from months before. Mumbai is the main centre where one could see the celebrations of Ganesh Chaturthi at its very best. Every street in the city is decorated with lights; every shop and home is cleaned and ornamented. The last day of the festival is called ''Chaturthi'. On this day, huge statues of Lord Ganesha are taken out in gala processions to the nearest river or sea and immersed. The processions are lead by dancers who dance to the beats of music and drums. Devotional songs are sung by musicians all along the way till the immersion is done. The immersion marks the end of the festival.
The festival of colors is the celebration of onset of Spring. Falling around the month of March, Holi is truly a splendid occasion. Elderly people celebrate it sedately by applying gulal on each other's face. However youngsters make full use of it by throwing colored water and water filled balloons. Holi over the years has become a safe and clean festival. The colors used now a days are all natural and completely healthy. This awareness among the people has made the festival of Holi even more special. Though this festival is celebrated throughout India in different ways, there is a different charm about the events in Maharashtra, especially in Mumbai. Mumbai is home to many stars of Bollywood. And their celebrations are right in the center of all the media glare. The festival of colors is also seen as the victory of good or evil. A day prior to the Holi, there is a ritual called the burning of Holika. During this ritual, firewoods are burnt and people gather around the fire for some enjoyable moments.
Elephanta Cave Festivals
Elephanta Caves are situated some 10 km away from the coast of capital City Mumbai. Organized by Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) in the month of February, Elephanta cave festival celebrates the rich culture of Maharashtra with splendid dance and music performances of well known artists. The most admirable part of this event is definitely and the surroundings and the ambiance created by these surroundings. Set amidst the caves, the background of illuminated rocks is a treat to eyes. All the classical dances of India are performed here by imminent personalities. One can also get the feel of folk dances of local fishermen. Another attraction of Elephanta Cave Festival is the food that one gets to have here. The best of Maharashtrian cuisine is catered here at most reasonable prices.
Pune Festival is another cultural festival that is organized by MTDC. Celebrated in the month of August or September, Pune Festival is a complete one week festival. The festival consists of many dance as well as musical performances by famous personalities and upcoming artists. This proves to be an excellent platform for all the budding artists to showcase their talents. Apart from classical dances there are folk dance performances as well from all over the country. There also are many drama and theater performances.