Festive December: Host of festivals planned in city to usher in Christmas, New Year
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Festive December: Host of festivals planned in city to usher in Christmas, New Year

December 15, 2019

WINTER TO REMEMBER

  • Karanji Lake Festival: Dec. 16 and Dec. 17 at Karanji Lake
  • Christmas Carnival: Dec. 21 & 22 at St. Philomena’s Church
  • Winter Festival or Magi Utsav: Dec. 22 to Dec. 31 
  • Annual Flower Show: Dec. 22 to Dec. 31 at Mysore Palace
  • Mysuru Bird Fest: Dec. 28 and Dec. 29
  • New Year’s Eve (Dec. 31): Police Band performance from 11 pm to 12 am at Mysore Palace
  • Display of fireworks: At the stroke of midnight on Dec. 31

Mysuru:  If you are looking for an exotic destination for your Christmas or Year-end holiday, Mysuru can be in your itinerary to spend the holidays with full of entertainment. For, the city, famous for its extravagant Dasara which attracts tourists from across India and the world, is gearing up to host many festivals to provide wholesome entertainment to tourists and the locals, enabling them to welcome the New Year in style.

The city witnesses a heavy influx of tourists for Christmas and New Year. This year, it will be a ‘December to Remember’ in its true sense as a host of events are planned. The Festive December starts from Karanji Lake Festival that will be held at the scenic Karanji Lake Nature Park starting tomorrow (Dec.16). The two-day festival is being organised by Mysuru Zoo Authorities. 

Next is the Winter Festival or Magi Utsav from Dec.22 to Dec.31 organised by the District Administration, Karnataka Tourism Department and the Mysore Palace Board. There is a host of events planned for Winter Festival and chief among them is the Annual Flower Show from Dec. 22 at Mysore Palace premises.

As part of the Winter Festival, a Mysuru Bird Fest 2019 will be organised on Dec.28 and 29 where participants will be taken to different birding sites in Mysuru and where experts will give lectures and conduct technical sessions on winged beauties.

A first-ever Christmas Carnival will be held on Dec.21 and 22 between 11 am and 8 pm at the historic St. Philomena’s Church. The Carnival will see amazing live performances from the likes of Western Carols to Classical Carols. 

Karanji Lake Festival – Dec. 16 and Dec. 17

Celebrating rejuvenation and reclamation of the Karanji Lake, the Karanji Lake Festival will be organised on Dec.16 and Dec.17. 

Karanji Lake had gone dry, forcing the Zoo management to remove the silt that had accumulated over the years. Soon after the silt was removed, it rained and the Lake regained its glory and charged the groundwater, improving the overall lake ecosystem.

The Lake Festival will be organised to create awareness about biodiversity and its ecosystem as well as significance of preserving and rejuvenating depleting water bodies. On Dec.16, a photo exhibition will be inaugurated at the Lake premises at 10.30 am followed by the inauguration of ‘Karanji Lake Festival’ at 10.40 am. 

The Karanji Lake premises being readied this morning for tomorrow’s Lake Festival.

Quiz, bird-watching, sessions

From 11.50 am, a quiz programme has been organised at Regional Museum of Natural History (RMNH) premises. M. Vijay, John Thomas and Guruprasad will be the quiz masters. From 2.30 pm to 4.30 pm, a drawing contest has been organised at RMNH and Mysore Zoo Amphitheatre premises.

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On Dec.17, bird-watching and botanical walk will be held from 7 am. Scientists Dr. A.P. Tiwari and Dr. M.V. Vijay as well as Dr. Srinivas, D.H. Tanuja, Shailajesh, Sahana, Pranav and other resource persons will educate participants about the flora and fauna specific to the lake surroundings.

From 10.30 am, resource persons will shed light on history of lakes in Mysuru at Old Food Court premises of Karanji Lake. From 11.20 am, Naturalist Prof. U.N. Ravikumar will speak about the significance of preserving and rejuvenating depleting water bodies.

From 12.20 pm, skit writing contest will be held about the topic ‘nature,’ following which Zoo Authority Member-Secretary B.P. Ravi will speak about ‘role of general public in preservation of lakes.’ 

From 2.30 pm, discussion will be held about conservation of Karanji and Lalithadripura lakes followed by valedictory function from 3.15 pm. Also, fancy dress contest for children will be held. 

For more information, contact Mob: 96866-68099 or Ph: 0821-4267333.

Flower Show at Palace – Dec. 22 to Dec. 31

The Annual Flower Show as part of the Winter Festival will begin from Dec.22 at Mysore Palace premises. Over four lakh flowers, including more than 32 varieties of ornamental flowering plants such as Marigold, Salvia, Dahlia, Coxcomb, Petunia, Chrysanthemum, Nasturtium and Antirrhinum, along with thousands of Ping Pong, Carnation, Alstroemeria, Gerbera, Orchid, Blue Daisy and Dracaena, will be on display.

Arrangements are in full swing to exhibit a life-size model of Jayachamaraja Wadiyar seated on the throne with floral replicas of two elephants at the entrance. A replica of Bangalore Palace with Ping Pong flowers (45x10x20 feet) as well as life-size models of Siddaganga Mutt Seer late Sri Shivakumara Swamiji with Jayachamaraja Wadiyar will also be set up.

Selfie Zone

There is also a special Selfie Zone with floral replica of ‘Khas Durbar’ (Private Durbar) of Mysore Palace in the background. Seated model of Swami Vivekananda made using flowers and vegetables, model of Shivalinga constructed with lemons and Bilva leaves, replicas of ISRO satellites and a number of desert animals and birds are some of the other attractions.

At the entrance of Sri Varahaswamy Temple, a 27×13 feet Vertical Garden using 10,000 Petunia flowers will be built. A number of medicinal plants including Aloe Vera, Tulsi and Betel leaf saplings would be distributed to visitors at the exit point.

Classical Music

At the Flower Show premises, classical music will fill the air where compositions of Jayachamaraja Wadiyar will be played. In addition, the Palace will be illuminated on all nine days from Dec.22 between 7 pm and 8.30 pm. Cultural programmes will be held for connoisseurs of classical music and dance. 

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On the New Year’s Eve (Dec.31), Police Band will perform from 11 pm to 12 am followed by display of fireworks by Mysore Palace Board.

Photo Exhibition

There will be a photo exhibition based on different themes such as ‘Dasara – Then and Now’ and ‘Wadiyar Rulers.’ Arrangements have also been made to showcase a number of documentaries about Dasara Festival.

Eye-catching colourful dolls — Navaratri Bombe —will also be displayed at the Flower Show venue. 

Priest Bhanu Prakash Sharma of Srirangapatna will exhibit traditional Mysuru dolls while Jayasri Nagaprasad’s Vishnu Darshana, Geeta Srihari’s Shiva Leelamrita and Sri Ramadarshanam and Annapurna Gopalakrishna’s Bharatiya Guru Parampare will be on display. The event will be inaugurated on Dec.22 at 6 pm.

Christmas Carnival – Dec. 21 and Dec. 22

The first-ever Christmas Carnival will be held in city on Dec. 21 and Dec. 22, between 11 am and 8 pm at St. Philomena’s Church. Co-hosted by Human Wings Foundation, this Carnival will see live performances from the likes of Western Carols to Classical Carols.

The event is dedicated to fun and frolic where everyone takes the centre-stage for entertainment that spans across carols, dance, artworks, flea market and a wide variety of other activities including face painting, comedy and magic shows, juggling, cycle stunts and skating. A cake exhibition along with various cookies and donuts and Christmas-based delicacies will be held. 

Chief organiser Rev. Staney D. Almeda said that it is the first-of-its kind event happening inside the Church which will see Christmas-based theme with eat, play and shop experience all at one go for visitors. Entry is free. 

For more information, contact Mob: 98860-55878 or 91487-57445.

Mysuru Bird Festival – Dec. 28 and Dec. 29

Mysuru Bird Fest-2019 will be held as part of the Winter Festival in Mysuru, on Dec.28 and 29. This is the second edition of the event and is being continued after a good response received last year.

It is jointly organised by the District Administration, Tourism Department, Forest Department, Mysuru Zoo and Mysore Nature group, along with Regional Museum of Natural History (RMNH), Mysuru.

Registration fee will be Rs.300 per participant (limited to first 100 entries) that includes lunch, tea and dinner on Dec.28 and breakfast, lunch and tea on Dec.29 and also local transportation to birding sites. It does not include transportation to Mysuru and accommodation in Mysuru.

There will be a total of five talks by experts on various topics related to birding on both days. There will be two field visits, one each on Dec.28 afternoon and Dec.29 morning, led by knowledgeable resource persons. Birding sites are all around 30 minutes distance from the city, and covers wetlands and scrub/ degraded forest. Participants will be divided into six teams by the organisers.

Details and the link for registration will be announced soon by the District Administration.

By M.T. Yogesh Kumar

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