Hordes of revellers are expected to gather at the Thekke Gopura Nada of the Vadakkumnathan Temple to watch ‘Kudamattom' (display of ornamental umbrellas), the most colourful event of Thrissur Pooram.
The 30-hour festival will unfurl in all its splendour and glory on May 12.
Pooram offers a smorgasbord of sights, sounds and smells. Visitors get to enjoy the sights of mammoth processions, complete with caparisoned elephants and traditional musicians, and age-old Pooram customs and ceremonies.
Pooram celebrates the symbolic meeting of the deities of the Paramekkavu, Thiruvambadi and Sree Vadakkunnatha temples.
The festivities begin at dawn with processions (‘Cheru Poorams') moving towards the city from Kanimangalam Sastha, Karamukku Bhagavathy, Neythilakavu Bhagavathy, Lalur Bhagavathy, Panamukkampalli Sastha, Choorakkottukavu Durga, Ayyanthole Karthyayani and Chembukkavu Karthyayani temples.
Fifteen elephants each of the Thiruvambady and Paramekkavu contingents will stand facing each other at the Thekke Gopura Nada in the evening to stage ‘Kudamattom' (display of colourful umbrellas).
The following are the major Pooram ceremonies:
Thiruvambady temple procession: On May 12, the idol of Thiruvambady Bhagavathy will be taken in
a procession to Naduvil Madom, an ancient Brahmin mutt, in the morning.
The ceremony is called ‘Madathilekku Varavu'. When it starts, the procession will have three caparisoned elephants. Panchavadyam performance will accompany the rites. The procession then proceeds to Vadakkunathan temple ground. The ceremony is called ‘Madathil Varavu'.
Elephants are added to the procession in stages and by the time it enters Thekkinkad Maidan, their number will be 15.
Paramekkavu temple procession: The idol of the Paramekkavu Bhagavathy too will be taken to the
Vadakkumnathan temple. The procession features 15 elephants. It enters the temple through its eastern gate. ‘Ilanjithara Melam' is held in the afternoon. After a two-hour performance, the procession from Paramekkavu moves towards the statue of Rama Varma in front of Thrissur Corporation office through an entrance at the south of the temple. The Thiruvambady contingent enters the Vadakkumnathan temple through its western gate and leaves through its southern gate.
Thiruvambady and Paramekkavu contingents then stand face to face. And ‘Kudamattom' is staged. The main fireworks are held in the wee hours of May 13.
Farewell ceremony: Pooram ends with ‘Upacharam Chollal', farewell ceremony. The idols of Thiruvambady Bhagavathy and Paramekkavu Bhagavathy are taken back to the respective temples.