All About the Yuba City Annual Sikh Parade

Nagar Kirtan Guru Gadee Diwas Inaugural Festival

The Yuba City Sikh festival is one of the biggest and most spectacular Sikhism annual events in all of Northern California drawing hundreds of thousands of devotees and spectators. The three day Guru Gadee (Gaddi) Diwas festivities celebrate the inaugural anniversary of Guru Granth Sahib, Sikhism's holy scripture. Gurpurab events which include worship services and kirtan climax with Nagar Kirtan, an annual procession in which Sikhs carry the scripture from the gurdwara on to a float and parade through the streets of Yuba City singing devotional hymns. Cramming the gurdwara grounds and spilling out to line the parade route are bazaars with wares catering to every whim and need associated with Sikhism interspersed with free food booths offering every sort of delectable langar.

Yuba City Annual Sikh Parade Festival

Yuba City Guru Gadee Float
Yuba City Guru Gadee Float. Photo © Khalsa Panth

Festivities begin Friday with flag raising of the Nishan Sahib bearing the Khalsa crest. Free food is available to all comers during the entire weekend event. Worship services featuring kirtan are held Friday and Saturday mornings and evenings. Sunday morning gurdwara services center around ceremonies led by Granthis transporting Guru Granth Sahib from the hosting Tierra Buena Gurdwara onto a decorated palanquin which heads up the parade. Sword dancing gatka troupes demonstrate their skill as devotees throng through the streets. Participating floats overflow with sangat representing gurdwaras from all over California, all around the USA and even Canada. Spectators mingle with sevadars serving free food and and vendors of colorful bazaars to line the parade route in a happy jumble of humanity.

Yuba City Nagar Kirtan Rainy Day Parade

A Sea of Umbrellas Follow the Yuba City Guru Gadee Float
A Sea of Umbrellas Follow the Yuba City Guru Gadee Float. Photo © [Khalsa Panth]

The Yuba City Nagar Kirtan inaugural festival takes place in fall. Because of all the planning involved the Guru Gadee parade cannot be postponed due to weather conditions and takes place rain or shine. In the case of rainy weather, floats are wrapped in protective plastic sheeting. Tents protect bazaars and food booths. Local businesses supply rain gear. Spectators and devotees deck out in an array of creative weather proofing. Rather than dampening spirits, stormy skies and showers seem to lend an ambiance of exhilaration for those dedicated devotees willing to brave the elements.

Yuba City Sikh Parade Wind, Rain, or Shine

Welcome to the 34th Annual Yuba City Parade
Welcome to the 34th Annual Yuba City Parade. Photo © [S Khalsa]

The 34th Annual Yuba City Parade is blasted by gusts of dust, stinging and blinding eyes to the bright vivid display of colorful Nashan Sahib banners, State, Federal and International flags billowing in the breeze.

Tips For Attending Yuba City Sikh Parade

Yuba City Mounted Police
Yuba City Mounted Police. Photo © [S Khalsa]

Make the most of attending Yuba City Nagar Kirtan, or any Sikh parade by planning ahead with these tips:

  • Ten Tips for Attending Nagar Kirtan
    1. Opening Ceremonies
    2. Finding Parking
    3. Appropriate Attire
    4. Sikh Values
    5. Free Food
    6. Riding Floats
    7. Moving Vehicles
    8. Shopping Bazaars
    9. Sanitary Facilities
    10. Seva Preparation and Clean-up
  • 5 Items to Take Along to Nagar Kirtan
    1. Instruments
    2. Umbrella
    3. Camera Phone
    4. Shopping Bag
    5. Stroller or Cart

Yuba City Guru Gadee Schedule of Events

Woman distributing langar in the streets of the Yuba City Sikh Parade
Woman distributing langar in the streets of the Yuba City Sikh Parade. Photo © Khalsa Panth

Guru Gadee festivities are generally scheduled to begin on the first Friday of November, continue through the weekend and conclude with the Nagar Kirtan parade on Sunday. All of Yuba city participates in the Annual Sikh parade event, closing street to through traffic. Law officer are on hand to direct traffic, provide security and to keep the peace which abounds through out the entire affair.

Yuba City Nagar Kirtan Blogs and Images

Yuba City Parade Sikh Motorcycle Club
Yuba City Parade Sikh Motorcycle Club. Photo © [Khalsa Panth]

Your comments and questions related to Yuba City Guru Gadee festivities are welcome in these blogs with Nagar Kirtan images: