May 15, 2007
PUNJABI DHOL BLAST
AND BHANGRA DANCE AT CHICAGO NAVY PIER
PASSPORT TO THE WORLD: India Festival Celebrations
Rajinder Singh Mago
Four bus loads of Metropolitan Chicago’s jubilant Punjabi
community members were transported by Punjabi Cultural Society of
Chicago (PCS) to Navy Pier to participate in PASSPORT TO THE WORLD:
India Festival Celebrations at Chicago Children's Museum at Navy
Pier on Sunday May 13th, 2007. The weather was beautiful. The event
was to celebrate Asian American Heritage month of May.
The program on May 13 began with a folk dancing procession on Navy
Pier lead by Punjabi Dhol (drums) group played by Maninder Singh,
Sukhi Basati and Kevin Atwal, while the members danced Bhangra pulling
in many other foot tapping spectators.
The program inside Chicago Children’s Museum included Punjabi
Indian cultural performances and music, learning to sing Punjabi
folk songs, playing Punjabi Dhol drum, demonstrations of how to
tie a turban, and Bhangra101 dance lessons by Rajinder Singh Mago.
The PCS children’s teams “Shaan Punjab Di” and
“Kuriyan Chicago Diya” performed Bhangra and Gidha dances.
The turban tying demonstrations were facilitated by Sikh American
Heritage Organization. Free refreshments were also provided.
“I am really impressed by all these Punjabi activities here
in Chicago,” said Narinder Singh Bhullar a visitor from India
who is also an editor of a major news paper “Punjabi Tribune”
in Chandigarh India.
“Passport to the World is designed to expose children to
a variety of cultures and to affirm each child’s own cultural
identity and ethnic heritage.” Said Keith McCormick, CCM’s
director of cultural programs. “It is our hope that programs
like Passport to Korea and India help prepare young children to
thrive in a world that is increasingly interracial and intercultural,
and demonstrates to them that cultural differences should not be
simply tolerated, but appreciated, encouraged and nurtured.”
“Passport to the World provides us an excellent forum and
an opportunity to share our rich Punjabi Indian culture, fine art
exhibits, music, dance and performing arts with the mainstream fellow
Americans,” said Mohinderjit Singh Saini, managing director
of the Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago www.PCSChicago.org and
ambassador for Passport to India. “It is very important for
all, especially the children, to experience other cultures because
this will strengthen their understanding of other cultures and of
people who may look different or wear different clothing."
“PCS has multiple days performances at Chicago Children’s
Museum during this month long celebrations. We were here on May
10th. and again will be here on May 17th,” said Sunny Kular
one of the coordinators of PCS’s participation.
“This is a great opportunity to outreach to the mainstream
community children who are going to become the leaders of tomorrow,”
said Bhinder Singh Pamma, the PCS president.
“PCS will also be participating at the Asian American Festival
at Daley Plaza on May 21 through May 25, 2007. PCS will present
“Sargam” dance group on May 21 and May 22, and “Balle
Bhangra” on May 25 at noon,” said Amarjit kaur Atwal.
The vice president of PCS.
The event was organized by Bhinder Singh Pamma, Amarjit kaur Atwal,
Ronny Kular, Sunny Kular, Amarpal Singh Matharu, Yadwinder Singh
Grewal, Parminder Singh Ghotra, Harkirat Singh Sandhu, Sukhmel Singh
Atwal, Thakar Singh Basati, Mohinderjit Singh Saini and Rajinder
The Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago is a not-for-profit community
organization devoted to promoting Punjabi culture, language, performing
arts, healthy life style and sports, education, and good citizenship
in the metropolitan Chicago area. For further information please