Make us your home page
Instagram

Indian chariot festival coming to Clearwater Beach

The Festival of the Chariots and Ratha Yatra Parade has provided a colorful spectacle on Clearwater Beach and shown here on Jacksonville Beach in 2011. The 1-mile parade loop is followed by a vegetarian feast.

International Society of Krishna Consciousness (2011)

The Festival of the Chariots and Ratha Yatra Parade has provided a colorful spectacle on Clearwater Beach and shown here on Jacksonville Beach in 2011. The 1-mile parade loop is followed by a vegetarian feast.

CLEARWATER — If the economy has squashed your budget, but not your travel bug, all is not lost. Just head to Clearwater Beach to get a glimpse and taste of the exotic.

The 3rd Annual Festival of the Chariots and Ratha Yatra Parade will turn Pier 60 Pavilion into a spectacle of color with a parade and festival featuring Indian culture and food.

"We had more than 500 people attend in Clearwater Beach last year," said Bhadra das, who has been involved in such festivals for 35 years.

ISKCON Alachua, the International Society for Krishna Consciousness from Alachua County, sponsors the festival and collects donations to pay for event costs. Founder charya, known as His Divine Grace AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, introduced the Festival of the Chariot, called Ratha Yatra in India, when he arrived in America from India 45 years ago.

The meaning behind the chariot procession, according to Bhadra das, is that God is coming out of the temple to give his mercy to everyone.

"Everyone is welcome to come," said Bhadra das. "This event has been going on for thousands of years in India. And now it is happening in countries all over this planet."

The public may take part in the festival on Clearwater Beach by joining the chariot procession and tasting the vegetarian food. The group has prepared enough food for about 600.

Anyone is free to grab one of the 100-foot-long ropes and help pull the chariot along the parade route, which starts at Pier 60 and makes a 1-mile loop, followed by the vegetarian feast.

. If you go

Festival of the Chariot

When: Saturday. Parade begins at 1 p.m. Cultural program and free vegetarian feast begins when the parade returns to the Pier 60 Pavilion. The event ends at 4 p.m.

Where: Pier 60 Pavilion, 1 Causeway Blvd., Clearwater Beach.

Cost: Free

For more information: Go to www.festivalofchariots.org or call (352) 316-4560 or (386) 462-2017.

Indian chariot festival coming to Clearwater Beach 04/30/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, April 30, 2013 11:48am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Hip-hop artist looks to deliver music, monologues with one-woman show

    Stage

    Tampa hip-hop artist and actress Dynasty takes her career into a new direction Saturday at Stageworks Theatre with her first one-woman show: A Star in Life's Clothing : Life. Love. Language. Lyrics.

    Courtesy of @JoeyClayStudio
  2. With volunteers as its heartbeat, annual Hillsborough County Fair grows larger

    Events

    DOVER — There's nothing else in the Tampa Bay community quite like the Hillsborough County Fair.

    Retired Tampa police officer Larry Henderson of Seffner sharpens a hewing ax used for squaring wood in the Hometown Hillsborough historical area of the fair. Beside him is a small sampling of the more than 7,000 tools he’s collected over the years.
  3. Mandarin Hide celebrates 7 years serving craft cocktails in St. Petersburg

    Bars & Spirits

    ST. PETERSBURG

    With its mascot, a mounted buffalo head named Manny, decked out in streamers and a shiny party hat, the Mandarin Hide celebrated seven years of serving cocktails on Central Avenue last Thursday night.

    Mandarin Hide’s mascot, a buffalo head named Manny, donned streamers and a shiny party hat as the bar celebrated seven years of serving cocktails last week.
  4. Taste test: pepper jack cheese

    Taste Test

    Even though autumn sometimes misses Florida altogether, this time of year sends our panelists searching for comfort foods. They also like to spice things up a bit while they sip pumpkin-flavored coffees and apple ciders. One thing that definitely adds a kick to meals or snacks is spicy cheese. This week, we sampled 15 …

  5. Review: Cast up to the challenge in Richey Suncoast's 'How the Other Half Loves'

    Stage

    Theater has many plays where there are two completely different apartments depicted on the stage, usually split down the middle, one on the right, one on the left.

    "How the Other Half Loves" runs weekends through Oct. 29 at Richey Suncoast Theatre in New Port Richey. Cast members are Christine Stoll and  David Daly (in front) and Bob Marcela, Heather Clark, Mike Worssell and Blake Parker (in back, from left). [Photo by Jess Glass]