Fresno Sikhs Celebrate Their Punjabi Heritage

December 12, 2005

Source: Sikh News Network/The Fresno Bee!OpenDocument

On December 12, 2005 the The Fresno Bee reported, "Young and old members of the Sikh community celebrated the Punjabi language through poetry and singing at Sunday's fifth annual cultural mela [a Sanskrit word for a get-together] in Kerman. Many of them stopped by to show off their talent for the first time, and others looked like veterans who knew how to please the crowd of about 200 people. The Punjabi Sahit Sabha California or the Punjabi Writers Association of California, held the event next to the public library with one of the largest collections of Punjabi literature. The library sits across from the Kerman Community Center, where the performances took place... The mela... was founded by Gurpreet Dhaliwal, a Fresno County sheriff's deputy, as an opportunity for the community to embrace its culture. Tens of thousands of Sikhs live in the Central Valley... Sunday's celebration included traditional dances such as the Gidhaa dance performed by girls and the Bhangra, a dance done by boys."