Let’s go fly a kite, cultural traditions proudly shown across sky

The sky above Wodonga was awash with colourful, cultural and competitive kites on Sunday, as residents celebrated their roots.

The newly formed Albury Wodonga Telugu Association was hosting traditional subcontinent fighting kite competition as a part of the Inidian Sankranti (Pongal) celebration.

Each kite visible above Williow Park, Wodonga was trying to win glory by ‘cutting’ the rest down and being the last kite left flying. 

Sankranti is a Hindu festival honoring the sun god Surya, held every January.

It is also a specific solar day in the Hindu calendar.

Sankranti marks the first day of sun's transit into the Makara (Capricorn), marking the end of the month with the winter solstice and the start of longer days.

About 100 people were expected to attend Wodonga’s Willow Park to participate and witness the kite festival.

The two-day festival started on Saturday, and featured special rituals, games and traditional Indian Rangoli decorations, which are colourful floor patterns made from rice, sand, flower and flours.

Wodonga’s Visy Rangubhatla said 145 people were expected to attend the first day of the festival, hosted at St Patrick’s Parish Hall in Albury. 

He said singing, dancing and cultural performances ran throughout the day, including a Rangoli competition. 

Mr Rangubhatla said the group consisted of people from India who speak the Telugu language in Albury and Wodonga.

Telugu, alongside Hindi, English and Bengali is one of the few languages with official primary language status in more than one Indian state.