Sunday: Chariot Festival

May 28

I am salivating as I write this thinking about all the pakora, naan, curry, tikka masala, kabobs, biryani, and other Indian grub I’m gonna stuff myself with this Sunday. But the annual Chariot Festival held at the Inner Harbor is more than just a feast for the belly. The festival’s anchor is the Ratha Yatra, a tradition that dates back 15 years in Baltimore and five millennia in India to celebrate the journey of the deities Jagannath, Balarama, and Subhadra to the Gundicha Temple. Bright and intricately decorated chariots pulled by festival-goers parade through the streets alongside music and dancing—a sight to behold. At Baltimore’s fest, you can also shop books and South Asian goods from the bazaar, learn about Indian and Hare Krishna cultures through educational displays, see traditional dance and music performances, and, if you get there early, join a free yoga and meditation session. But you’ll find me by the tandoor. Mantra and meditation at 10:30 a.m., parade at noon (starting at Federal Hill), festival at 2 p.m., Inner Harbor, Pratt and Light streets, chariotfestivalmd.org, free.

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