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iXiGOers Dec 09 2012

Which are the popular festivals and events hosted in Shillong?

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The people of Shillong love to make merry. The festivals and events for them is a great way to meet new people and renew acquaintances year after year. Festivals of Shillong are like colorful carnivals which includes lots of music, endless dancing and basically the celebration of life. This is the best way to see the local people at their colorful best, full of life, zeal and enthusiasm. Get in the groove of merriment and return rejuvenated with life. Some of the most interesting festivals and events celebrated in Shillong are:


  • Ka Shad Suk Mynsiem

    To pay tribute to nature for blessing the state with a prosperous harvesting season, an annual spring dancing event is organized which is participated by both men and women together. People dress up in their best traditional costumes. For men it is Jymphong, a kind long dress which is sleeveless and has thongs in the front and for women its beautiful dresses which are ornamented with jewellery and feather.

    Drums, flutes and cymbals take music to an ecstatic heights. The men and women form a circle and dance in their ritual steps. The dance is a symbolic representation of timeless fertility cult. The women represent receptacles of seeds and bearers of fruit and the men as cultivators, who provide the seeds and protect and nurse them till the crop is harvested.

    The energy and the vibrations and the kind of life that this dance emanates is unmatched.

  • Ka Pom-Blang Nongkrem

    This five day long festival is celebrated to thank almighty for blessing the tribe with a prosperous harvest. During this period the people pray for the peace and prosperity of their community. Celebrated during October and November, this festival has many ancient rituals associated with it. The Syiems are the official religious heads who are the guardians of ancient rites and rituals.

    Syiems perform an ancient dance in front of the sacred pillar called U Rishot Blei. This is followed by the ritualisticsacrifice of the goat. Once the sacred rituals are over, the carnival of music and dance and celebration begins. Men and women deck up in their best costumes to attract each other. They dance in circles dancing to the rhythm of the music. As the tempo of the music increases, the movements become more and more hurried. Men dance with open sword in one hand and Yak hair whisk in the other, all the way making a protective circle around the womenfolk. The flute, drums and cymbals take the music to an ecstatic heights. This is their way to thank lord for the gifts of the past year and seek blessings for the future.

These festivals mirror the culture & lifestyle of Shillong and are deeply connected to the geography of the place as well as the socio religious customs and economic conditions of the Khasi tribe. They celebrate life in all its glory and are humble for the blessings which they receive from almighty. The men and women break free from the mundane routine of their daily lives and get into the mode of some serious fun. Join in the celebration. Doesn't matter if you have two left feet, it's time to let your hair down and put your best foot forward. Have the dance of your lifetime!


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