Pradeep Pattanayak

Odia expats living in Houston recently celebrated Kumar Purnima utsav by observing all the traditional rituals associated with the festival. 

It is rightly said that 13 festivals are observed in 12 months in Odisha. This saying indicates that Odia people observe a number of festivals all round the year. And most essentially, each and every festival is associated either with mouth-watering sweets and cakes or some aromatic delicacies including non-veg food items. 

These festivals are no longer confined to Odisha. They have already travelled thousands of kilometres and are being celebrated in foreign lands as well. 

The case in point is Kumar Purnima, which was recently observed by Odia people at Orissa Culture Centre (OCC) in Houston. 

This year, as many as 67 Odia families observed Kumar Purnima Puja and celebrated Kumar Utsav on October 9 and 22 respectively.

They have been celebrating Kumar Purnima for the last 22 years. 

The Odias in Houston founded the OCC which spreads over 10 acres of land. While there is Lord Jagannath’s temple at the OCC, the Odias celebrate all festivals here, preserving and spreading Odia culture and tradition in faraway lands. 

Notably, Dr Aditya Samal and Gopal Mohapatra are the OCC’s chairman and president respectively.