On January 14, 2017 the Sree Venkateswara temple celebrated the colorful harvest festival Sankranti, also known as Pongal. Makar Sankranti is celebrated in almost all parts of India and Nepal in a variety of ways. In addition to celebrating the harvest, it is also the end of the monsoon season and the arrival of spring in South India. It falls on the same date every year – January 14th.
Makar Sankranti is mentioned in the Mahabharata and holds historical and religious significance. It is the festival of the Sun God and celebrates his divinity and wisdom. The Venkateswara Temple program included skits, music, and dances from the various schools who conduct classes at the Temple. At least 500 people attended this cultural program and there was a sumptuous dinner at the end.
Shanti Raghavan teaches at the temple for Ragapriya school and presented many of her students. Our children sang two songs – one in Tamil on Pongal, and another in Telugu on Sankranti. They did an excellent job even though they learned the songs in just a few weeks. The participants were: Prisha Juyal, Diya Nuka, Avneesh Saravana, Likhit Varanasi, Veda Chauhan, Avyukth Rangarajan, Urja Chauhan, Purva Chauhan and Raman Shekhar.
Congratulations to these children and to Shanti for a successful program.