Diwali, the Hindu Festival of Lights, is celebrated around the world by people of many cultures and faith traditions. It’s also becoming an annual tradition in the Lakeland.

The Lakeland Multicultural Association (LMA) will once againpresent a virtual Diwali program this year via its YouTube channel. The entertainment will be presented digitally, but the food will be real.

“On the 20th of November, we will be having a two part event,” said LMA president Kunal Jadav. “The first will be people will pick up food for takeout.”

Jadav says Indian meals will be available for pickup in Cold Lake and in St. Paul. The Cold Lake meals are catered by the Tandoori Fusion restaurant of St. Albert, and the St. Paul meals are provided by Mehjabin Abbas.

Meals will be available to pre-order sometime this week for pickup November 20 in Cold Lake or St. Paul. Pickup will be from 4:30 to 6:00 pm.

The second part of the celebration is a two-hour presentation of Indian entertainment and other programming.

“The show will begin at 6:30, and will include Indian performances and other multicultural performances,” Jadav said. “I believe there is Filipino dance in there and some African and some Chinese. The show will probably last anywhere from one and a half to two hours.”

Viewers can tune in the show on the Lakeland Multicultural YouTube channel.

The LMA promotes and celebrates different national and ethnic cultures within the Lakeland.

“Between Diwali and the other initiatives of the Multicultural Association, we are trying to build a more culturally diverse community as well as feature the different elements of different cultures,” Jadav said. “This is so the general community can relate to the different cultures, and as well, the people that are of those descents can feel included in this initiative.”

On ongoing project of the LMA is its “culture bag” program, which distributes material featuring a different culture every month. This includes items like an activity book and crafts. 

The November culture bag celebrates India, in keeping with this month’s Diwali theme.

“For this special edition, we are also going to include a kid’s book featuring India,” Jadav said.

The LMA welcomes members and volunteers of all backgrounds, ages, and abilities, Jadav said. 

Please see the Diwali advertisement on this page for more information.

Volunteers got 265 meals out the door at Cold Lake Friendship Centre during the Diwali celebration in 2020. FILE PHOTO