Sunday, April 13, 2014

Celebration of New Year 2071 BS in Portland

Rabin Man Shakya
Advisor, Nepa Chhen, Portland, Oregon, USA

Every new year brings new optimism, new hopes, enthusiasm, happiness and cheerfulness and it is no different with this New Year 2071 BS. Well, Nepal is a very tiny Himalayan country, territory-wise, of course, but there are different calendars of different ethnic communities in Nepal.

In economic terms, our country Nepal may be a poverty-stricken country, but in the front of arts and culture, there are reasons for Nepal to be proud of her cultural heritage, ancient arts and architecture. Ethnic diversity is one of the distinctive characteristics of Nepalese nationalism.

Nepalese people, no matter, where they are, like to celebrate Dashain, Tihar, Nepal Sambat and Lhosar festivals. The Bikram Sambat New Year is an official holiday in Nepal, but is not enthusiastically celebrated in Nepal, it is just another  day off for the people, whereas Nepalese across the world celebrate the Bikram Sambat New Year as part of maintaining Nepalese traditions and culture. It is to be noted that different ethnic communities of Nepal celebrate different new years, such as, Nepal Sambat and Lhosar festivals of different communities.

To celebrate the Happy New Year 2071 Bikram Sambat, a pot-luck reception was organized by Nepa Chhen at Neku Singh Memorial Theater, West Coast Hollywood Taekwondo in Portland, Oregon. About 80 people from different walks of life from among the Nepali community attended the reception.

The New Year reception in Portland was a happy confluence of wining and dining as well as lots of music, dance, poetry recitation and other fun (such as bingo game). The live performance on the occasion by a Nepali pop group in Portland was another feather in Nepa Chhen's cap.

The celebration of the New Year 2071 Bikram Sambat in Portland, Oregon by Nepa Chhen is a testimony to the fact that Nepa Chhen serves as a broader platform that accommodates the interests not only of the Newars, but of Nepal as a whole. I have been reiterating that Nepa Chhen should always distance itself from Newar, non-Newar dichotomy, and include everyone like it has been doing.

Actually, Nepa Chhen is the embodiment of Nepalese feelings and emotions. And the pattern of the presence of participants at the New Year's program clearly demonstrates the fact that diversity of the Nepalese ethnic communities in Portland were taken care of.

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