Governor Tony Evers has declared Aug 15th, 2019 as the ‘India Day’ in State of Wisconsin, honoring India; recognizing, certifying and endorsing the efforts brought by IndiaFest Milwaukee, a massive community building initiative launched by Spindle India, Inc., in 2013. Former Governor Scott Walker had also recognized and declared August 15th as the ‘India Day’ in Wisconsin in 2018. We celebrated the official India Day of Wisconsin on Aug 17th at IndiaFest Milwaukee, making it a significant milestone, one of its kinds.
“IndiaFest Milwaukee is the largest celebration of India Day in the State of Wisconsin…in addition to celebrating Indian culture, IndiaFest Milwaukee provides a platform for collaboration, connection, education and growth by providing a space for cultural exchange and appreciation; and promotes diversity, inclusion, community, culture and education in Milwaukee by establishing a broad and collective appreciation of India Day, Indian culture and the Indian community”, exclaimed Governor Tony Evers.
“Wisconsin is proud to have IndiaFest Milwaukee, a collaborative and educational service that has been bringing communities together for five years beyond cultures, boundaries, languages, religions and regions; Indian-American’s contribution to the culture, educational and economic fabric of the state of Wisconsin is tremendous”, said former Governor Scott Walker.
Wisconsin Department of Tourism, Travel Wisconsin’s continued support and alliance marks a critical partnership symbolizing the focus around positive economic impact. Travel Wisconsin promotes Wisconsin as a premier travel destination for fun.
Mayor of Milwaukee, Tom Barrett commended Spindle India, Inc. & IndiaFest Milwaukee for dedicated service and leadership, recognized its outstanding contributions to the community and proclaimed Aug 15th, 2019 as the INDIA DAY throughout City of Milwaukee.
US Senator Ron Johnson issued a certificate of special senatorial recognition, presented to Spindle India, Inc., in recognition of 7th Annual IndiaFest Milwaukee with a remark, “Thank you for your continued dedication and efforts to bring visibility to the Indian Community of Milwaukee”. “All the acknowledgements and recognitions are tremendous milestones and proud moment for every member of South Asian Indian population in Wisconsin and beyond”, expressed Founder,
Chairwoman, and President of Spindle India, Inc., Purnima Nath. “We are weaving happiness, as we bring people and organizations together. Our goal is to weave India’s colorful cultural threads into the rich multicultural tapestry of American culture”, she remarked. Each state and union territories of India has a unique combination of languages, traditions, religions, clothing, and history, comparable to countries in Europe. “This myriad of diversity comes together in our celebration,” Nath said. “Diversity is the blood of globalism. Inclusiveness is the mantra of acceptance”, she adds.
“In Brookfield, we have a growing population of people with Indian heritage and I personally greatly appreciate the emphasis, which that heritage places on education. Many students of Indian background do exceptionally well in both our public and private schools. I believe this is because of the strong emphasis, which the Indian culture places, on education and parental involvement in the learning process.”, narrated Mayor of Brookfield, Steve Ponto.
This 7th annual grand scale celebration of “India” (#IFM2019), the official India Day of State of Wisconsin (#IndiaDayWI), inaugurated with observing India’s independence day with hoisting and honoring India’s tricolor flag flying high with the people of Wisconsin and many dignitaries of the community. National anthem of India sung by Children of Hindi School of Wisconsin touched hearts of all. Joseph Scala, an Appleton resident sung American National Anthem beautifully. Patriotic songs and dance by our young children honoring India made it extra special that connected people to our mother land.
IndiaFest Milwaukee 2019 is the most vibrant and exciting experience of “India”, aesthetically, visually, from sound byte to taste buds that tingles all senses with 210+ cultural program participants, 10+ hours of non-stop cultural programs, henna, jewelry, clothing, authentic cuisine & special children entertainment. 3 back-to-back concerts by internationally renowned artists kept everyone occupied. Classical tranquil concert was beautifully executed by Santoor Maestro Nanda Kishore Muley, Indrajot Banerjee in Sitar accompanied by Gouri Sankar Karmakar in Tabla. An amazing fusion of eastern and western instruments by Wahh Fusion Band with Shankh Lahiri (Tabla), Peter Mongaya (Guitar), Jason McKenzie (Drums), Seth Lynn (bass), Indrajit Banerjee (Sitar) and finally Bollywood Hungama beats by Celebrity DJ Dharak was amazingly executed. In the 2nd “IFM Got Talent” Nikita Singhal team of children aged from 5 to 13 years old that presented ‘Cultural Diversity of India’ theme grabbed the 1st prize, following Susan Abraham’s performance at 2nd place; and Ananya Rasal scoring 3rd prize.
Vinu Saravana, Neha Patil, Manu Saravana won 1st, 2nd & 3rd prize in children category in 5th Wisconsin Indian Singing Idol. Faiz Ahmad won 1st prize, followed by Manoj Tripathi and Ravi Nandan in 2nd and 3rd place respectively, in the adult category.
In children category of 4th Wisconsin Indian Dancing Idol, Aishwarya School of dance group grabbed both 1st & 2nd prizes, following the team of Sirisha Kota at 3rd prize. Manpreet Kaur & team and Ria Lahoti & team won 1st and 2nd in youth category team respectively. Ramesh Kindre & team, Bubusuhas Mullaveedu & team, Bhaktilata Sahoo & team scored 1st, 2nd & 3rd prize, respectively, in the adult category.
Supriya Vidwan, Kavita Tawadare and Bhanu Lavanya Arasada were the judges for Singing competitions and Meera Viruru, Drisya Raghuram and Anu Kelkar played the judges roles for dancing competitions.
Second year in a row, “Nepal” was featured at IFM2019 prominently, through cultural representations and exhibition. We thank Milwaukee Nepali Community for their kind engagement and superb collaboration.
Many talented dancers surprised the audience with impromptu flash mobs of Garba too. Vibrant, beautiful, bright and gorgeous traditional to contemporary attire and costumes, which is beyond the fashion or style statement, dressed the occasion in classic, timeless yet fashionable statements. IFM2015 launched DJ K, and he was back to support IFM2019 once again, all the way from San Francisco. Bollywood dance gets the biggest and popular presence, as it appears to have stolen many hearts of our community for its energy and fun, by now.
Authentic Indian cuisine, classical to contemporary music and dance illustrate culture of different Indian states & regions. A cause that is bringing business and people together, by relentlessly promoting Diversity, Inclusion, Culture, Collaboration and Education (#DICCE). Professional development, youth engagement, and service commitment are the primary concentration of work; and it was evident on the day. Play area, children’s activities, bouncy house, arts and craft area surrounded the children entertainment area, all planned and executed by Youth Volunteers (with the supervision of adults), Anoushka & Alabhya Prasad, Neha & Megha Patil.
Henna art, Chalk arts, Dhol were staple at this festival. IFM don’t just bring visibility to the people, organization or businesses that participates in the event; we go above and beyond! At the CBS TV live preview show of IndiaFest Milwaukee, prominent visibility was given to a local dance schools and students.
IFM2019 was supported by State Bank of Chilton, Trayix, Travel Wisconsin, Visit Milwaukee, Wisconsin Public Radio, India Garden, Sikh Religious Society of Wisconsin, Inc., Wisdom Infotech, ABC, CBS, 103.7 KISS FM, 99.1 MIX, La Mega Spanish Radio channel has supported IFM2019. Key volunteers contributed towards success of the event are Shubhra & Bharat Prasad, Ravi Shankar Kummary, Manju Patil, Balaji Rangachari, Ashita Verma and Phoua Vang.
We had extreme pleasure of presence of some of the dignitaries and community leaders amongst us. Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, Brookfield Mayor Steve Ponto, Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm, Senator Chris Larson – District 7, Alderman Tony Zielinski, Vanessa Lianas office of US Senator Tammy Baldwin, Danyell Tremmel – office of US Senator Ron Johnson, Supreme Court Justice Daniel Kelly, Milwaukee county Judge Paul Dedinsky & judge Dan Gabler were some of them.
Consul General of India, Sudhakar Dalela thanked and congratulated and complimented us for working with the vibrant Indian American community of Milwaukee to organize IndiaFest every year to showcase India and its rich cultural heritage, traditions and values.