Christmas & New Year Lighting Celebration in Park Street Kolkata - A Photo-Feature

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Park Street Lighting - Calcutta Christmas New Year Holiday Festival 2011

Kolkata, December 31, 2011, (Washington Bangla Radio/Penning Creations): Ho ho ho!!...so came again Christmas time, with it the mistletoe and wine. Well maybe the mistletoe’s not completely authentic, and the wine would be competing with a larger variety of drinks, but the Christmas spirit in Kolkata perhaps reaches that public celebratory stage, which most of the proprietor countries wouldn’t.

It’s actually very true that Christmases in the west have never been a cause for public celebration as it’s always been an intimate family affair. People mostly have to bid their social circle a temporary goodbye in order to put up with their parents or obnoxious uncles, overloaded on turkey and wine, then some more turkey and a bit more wine – it usually goes around in a circle until after Boxing Day.

However, Kolkata being the former capital of British India, has somehow managed to retain the excitement and slight charm about Christmas – often fuelled by day dreams of finding yourself in a snow laden garden with father Christmas riding around you in his open sleigh. To be fair, you’d have to say Kolkata hasn’t just hung on to the tradition but built on it by turning it in to a cause for general celebration via parties and fabulous lighting. Almost like an American Halloween.

Park Street, more commonly called Food Street, opens up its own repertoire of some of the best Christmas cuisines and savoury selections, while the clubs and social hotspots save their best DJs and event planners for this day. Places like Trincas, Flurys and Peter Cat are always the favourite places for grabbing breakfast, then lunch and maybe even dinner. People usually like to mix and match though.

Turkey is high on the agenda but honestly speaking, Kolkata wouldn’t be as turkey mad as Britain and America are. Without turkey there is no Christmas over there and rightly so. It’s what makes Christmas, well ...Christmassy. Kolkata’s spirit is indulged in a different genre of Christmas celebration - one which consists of going out and painting the town “Christmas” red. It’s about the lights, the glitter, and the bright set up which makes Park Street glow up like a bonfire. Who knows, might even be possible to spot Park Street from space on a night like this.

Fast forward a week to New Years Eve and the game gets upped another few notches to complete the annual extravaganza.

The usual hotspots of the city don’t disappoint during Christmas and New Years. CC & FC, Royal Calcutta Golf Club, Tollygunge Club, the Saturday Club, and all the other popular clubs, pubs and discs get the hottest crowds drunk on the winter festive spirit – ready to party the night away and maybe even the early hours of next day.

Artists like DJ Rink, DJ Sammy, and the dual team of DJs Austin and Shiva are among the many to spin their mixing decks and musical repertoire through the night so that Kolkata can greet Jesus Christ and the New Year as well, in style. 

It’s probably something Joseph or Mary, or even the three wise men never imagined all those years ago in Bethlehem. But the celebratory emotions and sharing the joy of Christmas and New Year are probably right on target.

With a true blue spirit of enjoyment, which is so exclusive to Kolkata, the city sure knows how to make the Christmas merrier and the New Year even happier!


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