ISKCON gears up for Heritage Fest
BANGALORE: Labelled a festival of “enlightenment, creativity, and entertainment”, the ISKCON Heritage Fest, got up annually to celebrate “India’s glorious heritage”, is perhaps the only one of its kind both in the spectrum of events it covers and the massive participation of school children.
The grand and colourful festival has been gathering thousands of children into its fold, come Janmashtami time, and expanding the number of events every year, to accommodate student interests and to keep abreast with the times, which merits attention.
The heritage festival, an inter-school cultural competition focusing on traditional arts and culture, began in 2001 with 16 events, and today boasts of 48 events, with the entry of new contests such as radio play and extempore speech, to accommodate the ever-changing interests of young aspirants.
From the conventional events such as rangoli, Gita chanting, vedic quiz, flower arrangement, folk dance, mono acting, and classical music and dance, there are contests such as dumb charade, elocution, essay writing, painting, sketching, and story telling among others, to tap children’s creativity, intellect, and artistic inclinations.
One has seen the Heritage Fest evolve as a sort of movement to garner school children into interesting and challenging activities that are yet steeped in tradition, and over the years, schools far away from the vicinity of ISKCON, Rajajinagar, have begun participating in large numbers.
So much so, that last year, about 50,000 children entered the contests, and considering the growing popularity of the festival, the event has been decentralized this year, and will be held at five different venues to facilitate increased participation, says ISKCON.
Spread over 27 days, the event truly wears a festive air, and is a sight to behold, abuzz with activities, from the visually pleasing flower arrangement and rangoli section, to the knowledge-based Gita recitation and Vedic quiz, and literary and other performing arts contests that animate children.
The contests are open for public viewing, proving to be an eye-opener regarding young talent and an enjoyable event for adults too.
An endearing ‘Krishna costume show’ winds up the event, which is a run-up to the expansive Janmashtami celebrations at ISKCON.
The contests for government school children begins on July 9, and that for private schools on July 11.
For details, visit http://www.iskconbangalore.org/heritagefest, or call 93412 11119, 93413 22458.