The sandy beaches at Suryalanka beach front are witnessing hectic activity as preparations are in full swing for organising the Bhavapuri Beach Festival on June 22-23.

The beach here has been attracting quite a number of tourists from Hyderabad and other cities, but a lot needs to be done to tap the local tourist potential. Apart from the cottages built by the APTDC, there are no facilities for recreation, food and lodging at the beach front.

Locals expect the two-day beach festival to give a fillip to the beach.

Union Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas Panabaka Lakshmi, who took the initiative to organise the beach festival, used her cordial relations with Union Minister for Tourism K. Chiranjeevi to secure a grant of Rs.12 lakh. Mr. Chiranjeevi is expected to visit the festival on June 23 along with PCC president Botsa Satyanarayana and other ministers.

An array of cultural programmes and beach sports has been lined up for the two-day event. Deputy Commissioner of Commercial Taxes, Ch. Manmadha Rao who heads the cultural committee chalked out a two-day programme, which includes performances of local artistes. The highlight of the programme would be an exhibition of sand sculptures by Fine Arts Department of Andhra University.

The other prominent programmes are, `Jalara Nruthya Geethalu,’’ peformed by Chakrapani of Nellore, ``Andhra Jalari Dance,’’ by Sai.

With the traditional theme of fishermen and their livelihood, the festival is promising to a colourful affair.

District Collector and Chairman of organizing committee S. Suresh Kumar said that the district administration would leave no stone unturned to make the beach festival a huge success.

Additional Joint Collector S. Venkata Rao, RDO, Tenali, S. Sreenivasa Murthy, DSP A. Bhaskar and project director, Dwama and special officer of Bapatla, Anil Kumar were also present at the meeting.