FLORIDA CELEBRATES INDIA REPUBLIC DAY
Here are a few of the Florida communities celebrating India’s Republic Day.
SOUTH FLORIDA (LAUDERHILL): The Indian Religious and Cultural Center (IRCC) will hold its Lohri/Republic Day/Anand Bazaar from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 31, at Central Broward Regional Park, Corporate Shelter No. 1, 3700 N.W. 11th Place, Lauderhill. For information on the event, which is free to attend, call (954) 543-1539, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://www.irccflorida.com/
TAMPA: The Federation of India Associations (FIA) of Tampa Bay will hold its Republic Day event Sunday, Jan. 31, at India Cultural Center, 5511 Lynn Road, Tampa. Festivities will begin from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Booths by member associations in respective regional languages will be set up. Food/vendor booths will be day long. For more information, call FIA President Mahesh Modha at (813) 476-1540 or event chair Nila Patel at (813) 494-4494.
ORLANDO: The Hindu Society of Central Florida (HSCF) New Age Group will hold Republic Day celebrations from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 24, in the HSCF Community Hall, 1994 Lake Drive, Casselberry. There will be a cultural program and speeches by guests. Indian snacks, tea/coffee will be served. For information, call Madan Arora at (407) 971-9259 or email email@example.com
GAINESVILLE: The India Cultural & Education Center in Gainesville will celebrate India’s Republic Day on Saturday, Jan. 23, at the center, 1115 S.W. 13th St. Indian food and snacks will be sold before the cultural program. For details, visit www.icec-florida.org
Khaas Baat Business Beat
A partnership with Indo-US Chamber of Commerce, Tampa
KAI PO CHE! CELEBRATE MAKARSANKRANT THIS MONTH!
Florida communities are preparing to celebrate the festival of kite flying, which also is known as Makar Sankrant, Uttarayan, Lohri and Pongal. Here are a few:
BOCA RATON: The Punjabi Association of South Florida will hold Lohri from 6:30 to 10:30 p.m. Jan. 9 at Florida Atlantic University Boca Raton campus, 777 Glades Road; advance member tickets are $20; non-members are $25; children 6 to 10 years are $10; for information, call Renu at (954) 384-2217, Usha at (561) 523-8665 or visit www.thepunjabiassociation.org
SOUTHWEST RANCHES: South Florida Hindu Temple will hold Lohri celebrations from 8 p.m. with a bonfire on Jan. 13. The mandir is at 13010 W. Griffin Road, Southwest Ranches. For information, call (954) 252-8802 or visit www.sfht.org
TAMPA: The Gujarati Samaj of Tampa Bay will celebrate Uttarayan from 11 a.m. Sunday, Jan. 10, at the Florida State Fairgrounds, 4800 U.S. 301 N., Tampa. Use MLK entrance. Free for Samaj members. Non-member adults pay $15 and seniors/kids under 18 years of age are $10. Nominal parking fee is payable by all. There is a special discount for students with ID: $10. Snacks and lunch will be served. For more information, call GSTB President Jigisha Desai at (813) 731-7747 or Treasurer Keval Brahmbhatt at (813) 494-2700.
And on Thursday, Jan. 14, Sanatan Mandir, 311 E. Palm Ave., Tampa, will hold a Lohri/Makarsankrant puja at 8 p.m. For information, call the temple at (813) 221-4482.
Also, Ambaji Mandir will hold Vishnu Sahasranaman at 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Jan. 14. Ambaji Mandir is at 10991 58th St. in Pinellas. For more information, call the mandir at (727) 388-6685, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.ambajimandir.org
Laxmi Narayan Mandir, 4615 George Road, Tampa, will hold Aditya Hrydayam at 10 a.m. and Vishnu Sahasranaman at 6 p.m. Jan. 14 as part of its Makarsankranti celebrations. For information, call (813) 444-9786 or visit www.srilaxminarayanmandir.org
Also, the Maayboli Melawa Tampa Bay (MMTB) will hold its annual Makar Sankrant program from 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 23, at HCC-Auditorium (Brandon campus), 10414 E. Columbus Drive, Tampa. Veteran Marathi actor Dilip Prabhawalkar will portray his most sought-of-enact “Chimanrao to Gandhi.” For details, email email@example.com or visit www.mmtbusa.org/
ORLANDO: The Gujarati Society of Central Florida will celebrate Uttarayan from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Jan. 10 at Apopka City Athletic Complex, 3710 Jason Dwelley Parkway, Apopka. Admission is free for 2016 members; non-members pay $35 per person. For information, call (407) 460-2020 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Lohri bonfire celebrations will be held from 6 to 10:30 p.m. on Jan. 16 by the Hindu Society of Central Florida, 1994 Lake Drive, in Casselberry. Pre-paid Tickets are $12 per person or $15 at door. For details, call Prashant Saoji at (321) 460-0800 or visit www.hindutempleorlando.org
Also, Maa Durga Sri Sai Baba Temple will hold a Lohri Festival from 5:30 p.m. on Jan. 14. The temple is at 11414 S. Apopka Vineland Road, Orlando. For information, call (407) 574-8044.
BARTOW/WINTER HAVEN: The Bhartiya Samaj of Central Florida will celebrate Uttarayan from 11 a.m. on Sunday, Jan. 10, at Mary Holland Park, North Broadway Ave., Bartow. Tickets are $25. For information, call Malay Shah at (863) 512-4062 or visit www.bscfl.com
MELBOURNE (SPACE COAST AREA): The Indian Association of the Space Coast (IASC) will celebrate Uttarayan from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 17, at F. Burton Smith Regional Park, 7575 W. Highway 520, Cocoa. Tickets are $5 for paid members, $20 for non-members, and children under 18 years of age are free. For information, call (321) 271-6162, e-mail email@example.com or visit www.iascbrevard.com
NBA VOTES JAN. 31 ORLANDO MAGIC INDIA DAY ‘BEST HERITAGE NIGHT IN THE NBA’ 2 YEARS IN A ROW
The Indian American Chamber of Commerce (IACC) is leading Orlando’s official India Day celebration in downtown Orlando. This cultural tradition was officially recognized by Mayor Buddy Dyer in 2015 as he proclaimed Jan. 31 “India Day in Orlando.”
In partnership with Amway Center, NBA and Orlando Magic, the IACC has created a lineup of excitement showcasing the Indian culture and community with a street festival and a partnership with the Orlando Magic for the evening’s NBA Game.
There will be a Meet & Greet Madhuri Dixit with photo opportunity from noon to 2 p.m., which is open to sponsors only. For sponsor information, call Dr. Amish Parikh at (321) 217-6472 or Tino Patel at (407) 579-5050.
Afterward, a Fireside Chat “Powerful Indian Women” with the Bollywood actor from 2 to 3 p.m. at Amway Center. Admission is free to IACC members and family with preferred seating with RSVP. Non-members will be admitted with a game ticket.
A Cultural Street Fest will be held from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. in front of the Amway Center, showcasing Indian cultural dancing by various Indian organizations. Guests will also enjoy henna tattoos, sari wrapping, turban tying, free t-shirts and more. The event is free to the public and parking is available in nearby downtown lots.
At 6 p.m., the Amway Center prepares for a sold-out crowd, as the Boston Celtics take on the Orlando Magic in what the NBA has voted as the “Best Heritage Night in the NBA” two years in a row. The halftime show will feature entertainment by the Bollywood Dance Academy. The Orlando Magic Dancers have reformatted their normal routine to perform in traditional Bollywood style. The India Day Celebration is produced by a volunteer committee from the Indian American Chamber of Commerce led by Dr. Amish M. Parikh, chair of India Day.
“India Day is an opportunity to promote awareness of the vibrant Indian American culture by showcasing our local talents and we’ve donated over 4,000 NBA tickets back to the local community over the last three years,” said Tino Patel, president of the Indian American Chamber of Commerce.
Key sponsors include the Orlando Magic, Amish and Beena M. Parikh Family Fund, PepsiCo, Orlando Health, Century Link, Emirates, New York Life, SunTrust Bank, Greenspoon Marder PA, BB&T and the Orlando Solar Bears.
For information about tickets and sponsorship, visit www.iaccorlando.com
or write to