Bhubaneswar’s .FEST Concludes, Over 6 Lakh Footfall Registered During 15 Days
Bhubaneswar: The second edition of .FEST at the IDCO Exhibition Ground in Bhubaneswar, which concluded on Sunday, saw more than 6 lakh visitors.
Speaking on the conclusion of the 15-day event that took off on January 15, vice-chairman of Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA) Balwant Singh said, “The BDA planned this year’s festival to give residents of Bhubaneswar a unique experience, to which all segments of the community responded enthusiastically. With the .FEST, we take a unique approach to promote fostering inclusive cities with life in it and not just infrastructure development. A truly liveable city where everyone can enjoy safely without great barriers of socio-economic and political differences. A city which is meant for everyone who aspires to be a good human.”
During the annual .FEST 2023, the visitors from across the country took part in cultural, musical, food and storytelling events such as Bhubaneswar Live, BhuFeSto, Trails, and Sebe-Au-Ebe among others. They also witnessed some enthralling moments including a lineup of splendid performances by leading Bollywood and regional musicians, along with international musicians.
This year’s festival saw around 2000 people turn up for over 80 various trails curated by Ekamrawalk in three categories of Nature trails, Food trails and Museum Trails. .FEST also hosted Sebe-Au-Ebe (Then & Now), a photo exhibition of over 450 pictures showcasing the transformational journey of Bhubaneswar, which was curated by Ramakanta Samantaray. It witnessed the presence of around 4-5 thousand people everyday.
In the International Food Festival, 80-90 varieties of international cuisines from 16 Hockey World Cup participating countries were offered. This included six international stalls and 24 stalls of different states. The event also featured 4 government-run stalls with cuisine participation from Millet Mission to Mission Shakti to Koraput Café among others. Curated by the Hotel and Restaurant Association of Odisha, the International Food Festival transacted a total business of around Rs 2 crore with the presence of 18-20 thousand people everyday.
Another major attraction at this year’s .FEST was Bhubaneswar’s first ever Night Flea Market which witnessed the presence of 7-10 thousand people everyday and was curated by Sonal N More of the OCAL & ALBA. The Flea Market featured more than 270 stalls of local artisans, new-age designers and entrepreneurs which made a business of around Rs 1 crore.
The Night Flea Market also hosted 3 stages, one in each of the sections that provided a platform to more than 800 regional artists who entertained the visitors with a host of regional performances in Sambalpuri Folk, Dhemsa Dance, Ghumura, Paika Akhada, Nabadurga Dance, Jodi Shankha as well as modern, fun and unique performances.
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