MISSISSAUGA: Sankranti Haldi Kunku is an event to remember & look forward every year for all the Maharashtrian ladies in Toronto.
Makar Sankranti which is determined as the beginning of the auspicious phase marking the transition of Sun into the zodiac sign Makar (Capricorn).
During this festival of Sun God, the sun ends its journey towards South, termed as Dakshinayan, and starts moving towards North, termed as Uttarayan, heading towards the Tropic of Cancer. This phenomenon occurs in the Hindu month of Paush which starts during mid-December. It marks the end of of the month with the winter solstice and the start of longer days.
This year on 20th January, Maharashtrian women in the GTA celebrated the auspicious festival at the Pearl Banquet Hall, Mississauga.
The event was open to all women in Toronto to unwind & rejoice. Some 350 ladies attended the event where they were greeted with Haldi Kumkum (Turmeric-Vermilion) and Sesame treats. Each woman was also showered with gifts like a nose pin ornament & purses to take away. Entertaining games offering plenty prizes & gifts followed by dance performances by talented women were on the agenda during the entire afternoon.
This was also an opportunity to shop for traditional items from vendor stalls & dance to the tunes of Bollywood & Marathi songs played by the DJ. Besides being a chance to network in the community to meet old & make new friends, there was also a sumptuous dinner comprised of a wide spread of Indian appetizers & main course followed by irresistible desserts.
The commendable part was that all these women showed up in time when the temperatures in Toronto were down to -30 windchill. Despite the freezing temperatures, the women enjoyed the entire day with great enthusiasm and made this event a memorable one. Haldi Kunkum is the event that brings all these women together every year to celebrate & bond with the sweetness in life – which is the significance of the festival that quotes “Til Gul Ghya, Goad Goad Bola” – Meaning: – Eat Sweet & be sweet”.
The sweet sesame treats eaten during this festival are believed to be beneficial for health.
Every Haldi Kunku gathering brings the GTA women together and as the organizers said: ‘Magic Happens!’