It all started as a one-day event to celebrate the genesis of the city. Within seven years, the ‘Madras Day' (observed every year on August 22) has grown into an eventful ‘Madras Week,' bringing together thousands of city lovers. The next edition of ‘Madras Week' is round the corner, with a string of lectures, contests and discussions lined up.
Announcing this at a press meet here on Wednesday, historian S. Muthiah said ‘Madras Week' would be celebrated from August 15 to 22, but the events are expected to begin a couple of days early and carry on till August 29.
“What started as a day to celebrate the founding of the city is now a grand fortnightly event. Hundreds of volunteers get together to organise various events at different parts of the city,” he said. Last year, there were nearly 100 programmes that included talks, quizzes, exhibitions and performances, all centred around the theme ‘Madras.'
This year's programme to celebrate the history of the 371-year-old city would include talks organised by ‘Madras Musings' at various locations, Tamil talks to be held at Roja Muthiah Library, half a dozen heritage walks on Anna Salai, Broadway and Vepery, night walk in George Town, tree walks to be organised by Nizhal, quiz contests and photo exhibitions.
Alliance Francaise and Goethe Institut-Max Mueller Bhavan have also planned several events during the week. Voluntary organisations such as Rotary Club and bodies such as the Association of British Scholars and Coin Society will be hosting a few events. A series of music and dance programmes are being planned at the Freemasons Mini auditorium, Egmore, to be hosted by Chennai Heritage.
Hotels, including the Taj Group, Park, Green Park and Sheraton Towers, have charted out plans to host food festivals and various other programmes.
“Participation in these events is purely voluntary. Anyone who loves the city is free to join,” Mr. Muthiah said.