Indian Food Festival Attracts Diverse Crowd to Downtown Las Vegas
2019 marked the 16thyear of Vaisakhi/Indian Food Festival celebrations organized by the Baba Deep Singh Gurudwara. The event was attended by over seven-thousands Southern Nevadans with higher participation from non-Indians compared to the previous years.
The diverse attendance, superb continuous entertainment – bhangra teams from various University of California campuses, scrumptious Indian vegetarian and non-vegetarian cuisine along with shopping for Indian outfits and costume jewelry showcase the finest of what Southern Nevada Indian community has to offer. The organizers and the volunteer teams’ dedication & hard work was clearly visible in a flawless and thoughtful execution of the 9-hours event.
The event started at noon with all the local participating restaurants doing brisk lunch business, and continued till closing. As planned, the entertainment program started with an opening ceremony with a performance from the students of the local Nritya Academy of Indian Dances. The whole afternoon of festivities included diverse entertainment by local children, students of two dance companies – Sruti Perfoming Arts and Nritya Academy of Indian Dances, Masti and Lasya Dance Groups, Bhangra Stars and more.
The festival had an honor of having a special guest, Ravinder Singh Ranguwal, Punjab’s Cultural Ambassador, from Punjab. Ravinder has travelled the world on behalf of Government of India to promote Punjab’s rich heritage and cultural kaleidoscopes throughout the globe.
Ravinder entertained the crowd with many of the popular hit Punjabi songs. During his vibrant presence on the stage, he announced bringing the world bhangra competition to Las Vegas at the 2020 Indian Food Festival.
The unsullied enthusiasm displayed by the competing UC teams was stimulating and entertaining under the beautiful clear & cool Vegas afternoon. The lush green lawns at the amphitheater was packed with attendees. The busiest booth was complimentary turban tying where volunteers were overwhelmed by the curious crowd on getting their own turban in vivacious colors.
Sukhjot Parana with Mahek Punjab Di from Manteca, California
The gastronomical mouthwatering selection included – freshly grilled Kababs; selection of Biryanis; Dosas, multiple style, accompanied with Sambar and Chutnies’; Indo-Chinese Hakka Food; Vegetable & Fish Pakoras; Chole Bhaturey; Samosa & Chat Papri; along with assorted drink selections from Lassi to Faloda to satisfy the serious cravings of festival attendees.
The families and friends were strolling the grounds, mingling and socializing with friends and enjoying a once a year Indian festival. The group of Las Vegas Metro Police Department volunteers were present throughout to curtail any untoward incident.
Overall an exceptionally well-executed depiction of diverse India from entertainment to cuisine. Online social media and well-placed advertisements on google, and other media sites helped boost the attendance to this year food festival. Many of the local Las Vegas businesses enthusiastically sponsored the event to connect with the growing and prosperous Las Vegas Indian/South Asian community. All the funds raised at the festival will go to the Gurudwara Baba Deep Singh for their capital expansion projects.
Pictures shown are from different sources.