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Edmonton's Sikh community celebrate religion's roots
Published Sunday, May 22, 2011 5:23PM MDT
Members of Edmonton's Sikh community gathered Sunday afternoon to celebrate Vaisakhi, a holiday marking the beginning of the Sikh religion.
The 13th annual parade marks the creation of the Khalsa and the baptism of the first Sikh followers in 1699, beginning the Sikh faith.
Approximately 15,000 to 20,000 people turned out for the celebration in Mill Woods featuring traditional dance fighting, music and food.
Some were lucky enough to celebrate at the Vaisakhi parade for the first time. "I live in Fort McMurray and I never saw an Indian parade so this is my first time seeing it," eight year old Jasleen Grewal told CTV News of the experience.
"It's pretty cool."
Edmontonians weren't the only ones celebrating the holiday in droves, more than 70,000 people gathered in Vancouver in April to mark the holiday. That celebration is said to be one of the largest Sikh gatherings outside of India.
With files from Jessica Earle
Members of Edmonton's Sikh community celebrate Vaisakhi in Mill Woods. The men pictured are performing Gatka, a traditional form of dance fighting on Sunday, May 22, 2011.