Chakra Announcements

Daytona Beach Festival of the Chariots and Ratha Yatra Parade

by Nartaka Gopala dasi

Posted May 27, 2011

3rd Annual Festival of the Chariots and Ratha Yatra Parade

Daytona Beach, FL Monday, May 30, 2011 (Memorial Day)



Bhadra das at 352 316-4560 or,
Dharmaraja das at 386 462-9660
Govinda Syer 386 462 6344
Ramnath Gangisetti 904 955 0250
Nrsimha Caitanya das 904 819-0021

WHAT: An Indian multi-cultural parade and festival will be celebrated with entertainment for the whole family. There will be live music, singing, classical dance, books, bazaar, and lots of free delicious vegetarian food. The Ratha Yatra Parade is the oldest known parade in the world.

WHEN: Memorial Day, Monday, May 30, 2011. There is a cultural program at the bandshell from noon till 6 PM. The Parade begins at 1 the bandshell, goes to 1400 block North, and returns to the bandshell by 3 PM at which time the free feast begins. The festival continues till 6 PM

WHERE: The Bandshell on the beach, Daytona Beach.

WHO: All are welcome. Free admission. Wholesome fun for the entire family.

SPECIAL: VERY VISUAL event with colorful traditional costumes and flower decorations. Photography is permitted.

If you’ve ever dreamt of visiting colorful, exotic India, we have a treat for you. Get a taste of India without leaving Florida on Memorial Day, Monday, May 30, 2011. The 3rd Annual Festival of the Chariots & Ratha Yatra Parade, an Indian multi-cultural extravaganza, will take place on the beach at the bandshell in Daytona Beach from noon to 6 PM.

There will be lots of family-friendly activities and entertainment: live music (including the famous Mayapuris dance and music troupe, classical Indian dance, books. But the big draw is the delicious vegetarian food. There will be a sumptuous feast served free of charge to all.

The procession route is about a mile long and can be easily walked by all age groups. It begins at 1 PM at the bandshell and returns to the same location.. The parade will move in a leisurely fashion, stopping here and there along the route, giving way to song and dance. The procession’s unique feature is a huge chariot with a blue, red and yellow canopy decorated with swans, lotus flowers, flags, Hanuman and a brass chakra on top. This chariot has two very thick ropes attached to it that are over one hundred feet long. These ropes are pulled by the parade-goers, propelling the chariot along the parade route. Riding on the Chariot are the beautiful Deities of Jagannath, Baladeva and Subhadra, decorated with stunning silk outfits & real flowers. It’s a vision from another world. Accompanying the procession is lively Indian music and dancing, backed by double-headed mrdanga drums & karatala hand cymbals. It’s an ecstatic, exciting event.

The festival is sponsored by ISKCON Alachua, the International Society for Krishna Consciousness whose Founder/Acharya, His Divine Grace AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, came to America from India forty-five years ago and introduced the timeless tradition of the Festival of the Chariot (called Ratha Yatra in India). Since the 60’s this festival has been held yearly in over 50 major cities in the United States, Canada, and all over the world. Nine Ratha Yatras are held yearly in the state of Florida: Miami, Jacksonville Beach, Tallahassee, Orlando, Tampa, Gainesville, Daytona Beach, Clearwater Beach & St. Augustine.

All are warmly invited to attend this joyous, colorful festival, free of charge. Take advantage of a rare chance to experience the vibrancy of India, right here in Florida. Questions? Call: Bhadra das at 352 316-4560 or or Dharmaraja das at 386 462-9660.

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