Photo by Rachael Anne Kiesling / Contributing Writer
The Discovery Center at Murfree Spring in Murfreesboro held a free “Discover India Day” on Saturday. The event involved discussions of historical significance related to ancient and modern Indian traditions, photographs in front of the Taj Mahal and a day to dress up wearing traditional Indian clothes and Bollywood-style dancing.
Bollywood dances were featured early in the day. A Bollywood dance can be simply defined as a group of people who perform with an energetic and peaceful yet outspoken mind. Examples of Bollywood dance can be found on various videos from YouTube and in films such as “Lagaan.”
In addition to the dancing, there were arts and crafts where children of all ages sat at different tables, creating peacocks by cutting out the shapes, colorizing paper plates, gluing and combining it all together. Other arts and crafts included drawing flowers on a chalkboard and cutting and pasting Lotus flowers onto paper plates, and the especially interesting Indian process of creating designs with sand.
Food was displayed in the kitchen area with samples of vegetable pakoras, which is minced vegetables dipped in graham flour batter and deep fried, chicken tikka, which is tender boneless pieces of chicken subtly flavored with mild spices and barbecued on a skewer, and garlic naan, which is white bread stuffed with garlic. The event offered MTSU students a discount to purchase the meals at $7.99 rather than $9.99 for lunch plates or $11.50 for dinner plates.
Murfreesboro resident Kalpana Gowda said that the event was important to teach the community about India, as it was in the past and as it is now.
“(We) have activities specifically designed for kids to learn about Indian arts and culture. We also want to expose our young community (to the culture) of India,” Gowda said. “India became modern through science and technology as well as stepping in leadership positions all over the world where they travel back and forth.”
More information about the Discovery Center at Murfree Spring can be found here.
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