Vaisakhi also called Baisakhi, is a religious festival celebrated by Sikhs. This is normally celebrated on the 13th/14th April each year.

The History of Vaisakhi

It all started in 1699, when Sikhs from all over Punjab in India gathered together to celebrate the local harvest festival. It was then that the tenth guru, Guru Gorbind Singh Ji came out of a tent carrying a sword and said 'that every great deed was preceded by an equally great sacrifice'. He asked anyone who was prepared to give their life for their religion to step up forward. But this was a test, and the five brave people who stepped forward, willing to sacrifice their lives, were known as the Panj Piare or ' Beloved Five' from that day forward.

How is Vaisakhi Celebrated

On Vaisakhi Sikhs go to the Gurdwara (temple) to pray and religious services are held, which is then lead by hymns and eating langar. Langar is served across all Gudwara's in the world which contains traditional vegetarian dishes, this will often include vegetarian curry, rice pudding and roti ( chapati). The langar is free and offered to anyone who visits the Gurdwara.

Sikhs tend to wear colourful traditional Indian clothes and take part in par t in parades through the local streets. There is singing, dancing and chanting of hymns. This procession is called the Nagar Kirtan.

Nagar Kirtan's are still celebrated across larger cities which are open to the public to join in. So why not join in on the local parades and taste the delicious foods.

Happy Vaisakhi to those Celebrating!
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