Yuba City Sikh festival in its 40th year

Local News
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YUBA CITY, Calif. (KTXL) -- The Sikh Temple on Tierra Buena Road was humming with activity on Friday as the Sikh community geared up for a festival and celebration that culminates in the 40th annual Sikh Parade.

This year also commemorates the 550th birthday of the religion's founder and the 50th anniversary of the temple.

The event is one of the largest such celebrations outside India, with visitors traveling from overseas to attend.

"We are expecting like 120,000 people coming. This is a big day," said volunteer Sukhjinder Singh.

The 4-mile parade route has already been staked out by groups of viewers and dozens of portable toilets and garbage dumpsters have been placed along the route.

On the temple grounds, several large industrial-size kitchens were already serving early arrivals with the traditional Langar, free food offered to visitors at Sikh temples.

Non-stop scripture readings and a continuous prayer session were being performed inside the temple.

The event serves to educate the community about the Sikh religion.

"It's a showcase of how inclusive they are and they invite everyone to come enjoy the culture and religion," said Yuba City Mayor Ricky Samayoa.

This year's event is dedicated to Texas Sheriff's Deputy Sandeep Singh Dhaliwal who attended the festival several years ago to thank local Sikhs for contributing to Hurricane Harvey victims. Dhaliwal helped coordinate relief efforts and volunteers said he spent time doing volunteer work at the festival.

Immigrant farmers from the Punjab province in India began relocating to the Yuba City area in the 1930s and now make up a big portion of the population in the region.

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