Fair and Festivals of Mathura
Below here are given only the main festivals of Mathura, Different festivals are celebrated across mathura round the year.
Lord Krishna was born on this auspicious day ( eighth day (Ashtami) of the Krishna Paksha (dark fortnight) of the month of Shraavana (August–September ) of According to Hindu Calendar), This festival is celebrated with much fan fare in Mathura. All the temples at this time have very special decoration. Idols of Shri Krishna is decorated with new clothes and special Chappan Bhog ( 56 Sweet dishes) is offered to him. Hindus celebrate Janmashtami by fasting and staying up until midnight, the time when Krishna is believed to have been born. Images of Krishna's infancy are placed in swings and cradles in temples and homes. At midnight, devotees gather around for devotional songs, dance and exchange gifts. Some temples also conduct readings of the Hindu religious scripture Bhagavad Gita.
Radhashtami is celebrated by Krishna devotees as the appearance anniversary of Srimati Radharani, who is Lord Krishna's greatest devotee, the feminine aspect of the Absolute Truth, and Lord Krishna's energy Personified. Radhashtami is ceremoniously celebrated in the Brij area. On Radhastami, Sri Sri Radha Krishna deities are traditionally dressed entirely in flowers. Additionally, Radhashtami is the only day on which devotees may receive darshan of Radharani's lotus feet. On all other days Her feet remain covered.Devotees will fast until noon and sing devotional songs in praise of the Divine Couple and Their pastimes. Then a feast is served, most often including the famous Radha Red — a delicious, spicy, plum chutney.
Holi is the most popular festival of Mathura. It is celebrated on the full moon day in the month of Phalguna, which occurs usually on Feb-March. People throw colored powdered dye and also colored water on each other playfully. This festival is celebrated with huge applaud in Braj, Nandagaon, Barsana and Dauji ( Baldev). Various kinds of Holi is celebrated across mathura. ( like huranga is celebrated in Dauji, Lathmar Holi is celebrated in Barsana, A Pandit crossess the Live fire of Holi in Phagon ). Various Other festivals also takes place alongwih Holi in Mathura during the same time.
Govardhan Puja, also called Annakut (meaning a heap of grain)], is celebrated as the day Krishna defeated Indra. It is the fourth day of Diwali. The day is celebrated on the first lunar day of Shukla Paksha (Bright fortnight) in the Hindu calendar month of Kartika.Folk people do the parikrama of Goverdhan Hill during this day. This tradition has carried on from 5000 years ago to the 21st Century.
Yam Dwitiya ( Bhai Dauj )
Two Days after Diwali and next day of Goverdhan Puja. Festival of Yam Dwitiya also known as Bhai Dauj arrives in Mathura . On this day Brother & Sister together take holy dip in Yamuna River and visit the Yamuna Temple located near Vishram Ghat ,Mathura and seek their blessings. According to Hindu mythology Lord Yamraj, the God of Death, professed that those who will take bath on this day in Yamuna river and will perform Yamuna Pujan will be spared from the punishment inflicted on them by Yamraj for their misdeeds and will b provided a chance to repent
Gurus are believed by many to be the most necessary part of their lives. On this day, disciples offer puja (worship) or pay respect to their Guru(Spiritual Guide). It falls on the day of full moon, Purnima, in the month of Ashadh (June–July) of the Shaka Samvat according to Hindu calendar. Many people come to mathura on this day to do the parikrama of Goverdhan as well.
Once a year there is a grand car festival (Ratha Yatra) known as Brahmotsava during the month of Caitra (March-April). This festival lasts for 10 days. According to mythology this Rath Yatra symbolizes the Suryanarayana (The Sun God) nature of Lord Jagannath. During the Rath Yatra it is believed that Lord Shri Jagannath, Devi (Goddess) Subhadra and Lord Thakur Shri Balaram visit their devotees and bless them as they tour through the city seated in their Chariots.
Kansa Vadh ( Killing of King Kansa )
This festival is mainly celebrated in and around Mathura district of UP .This day falls on tenth day of Shukla pakchha of Kartik month of Hindu lunar calendar. It is marked to commemorate the killing of demon Kansa, the ruler of Mathura by Lord Krishna. To commemorate this event local Chaturvedis (also known as chaube in Mathura) who claim to be descendents of friends of lord Krishna erect and then thrash the effigy of demon Kansa and take out a huge procession chanting and claiming to be friends to the GOD Krishna and DEVOTEE TO His beloved RADHA who is believed to be incarnation of GOD’S Shakti.
The aarti held at the Vishram Ghat every evening is not to be missed, for the little oil lamps that are floated on the river set the placid water as sparkle with a myriad flickering lights. The Yamuna aarti at Vishram Ghat in Mathura is one of life's more beautiful experiences.The aarti itself is a gigantic seven tier bronze structure with scores of brightly burning wicks. As it swings through the air amid raw, heartfelt invocations, the brightly burning wicks seem to bring with them the kind of joy you have never experienced before.