Eats, beats on Hills Fest menu

Umiam Lake to host two-day festivities from November 4

SHILLONG, Sep 21: The two-day Hills Festival of Meghalaya will come alive from November 4.
Set on the banks of the Umiam Lake and supported by Meghalaya Tourism, the gala event celebrates the state’s modern and traditional wealth – from music, art installations to local cuisines.
The prime focus of the festival is to promote tourism, local artists and entrepreneurs. During the two days, the visitors will witness a plethora of immersive experiences, curated by a team of young and passionate individuals.
This year’s theme ‘Spirit of Meghalaya’ is a culmination of two major elements – eco-tourism and empowerment of local communities.
One of the highlights will be the launch of an array of Green Initiatives. Besides the idea of offering their patrons a rich and thrilling experience, the team believes in spreading the message of being mindful of our surroundings.
To promote sustainability and eco-friendliness, the installations will be entirely built with recycled and repurposed materials created by local artists and artisans. They will embody the mythical tales of the region, much like the famous Living Root Bridge which will be re-imagined into the performance stage, a representation of the relationship people share with nature.
To ensure minimum wastage and cleanliness, there will be arrangements of RO water stations, solar-powered stations, biodegradable service ware and plastic/flex for promotional backdrops to be replaced with recycled paper and bamboo, along with robust waste management at the event.
Empowering local
Apart from international and national artists, there will be several local talents (music, art, crafts, dance and food). They will get an opportunity to sell their products and conduct interactive workshops.
There will also be a robust volunteer programme across the state for college students to participate in the fiesta. Artisans to musicians from all over the state will come together to offer and share their knowledge and culture.
A newly-introduced concept of a Forage Aisle will highlight the local cuisines by dedicating a lounge dining area which is inspired by the tradition of foraging.
That is not all. Glamping tents will be set up for those who wish to spend their time amid nature.
There will be a cycling track to explore the nature trails. Another unique addition will be the PlayCare section. Being mindful of parents attending the festival, the organisers have planned a whole section dedicated to children’s care – an area where parents can tend to their kids and provide a safe space for them to play.
The festival’s complete schedule will be officially released on the festival’s social media pages.

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