Khatarua Festival of Uttarakhand
"Khatarua" is essentially the special Uttarakhand temple festival that marks the pastoral - agricultural success and is celebrated on the first day of the month of Ashwin in mid September, and signifies the beginning of the Autumn.
On the day of Khatarua, the people of Uttarakhand gather together and light bonfires, around which children dance, holding aloft colourful flags. People take special care of their cattle and feed them fresh grass. Cucumbers are offered to the fire of Khatarua, which is said to destroy all evil influences on the society. The victory of the king of Kumaon is also said to be one of the reasons for the celebration of Khatarua.
Vat Savitri Festival of Uttarakhand
"Vat Savitri" is one of the Uttarakhand temple festivals, celebrated on the Krishna Amavasya of Jyestha and on that day married women worship 'Savitri' and the 'Vat' or banyan tree and pray for the well being of their spouses. The married women observe fast in honour of 'Savitri and Satyavan' and worship in the temples, commemorating the intense dedication of Savitri through her intense devotion that saved her husband from the claws of death.
Ganga Dussehra Festival of Uttarakhand
"Ganga Dussehra" or "Dasar" is celebrated on the Shukla Dashmi of the Jyestha (May to June). The sacred Ganga is worshipped on this day and Dussehra posters, which have various geometric designs on them, are hung on the doors of houses and temples. These posters are once hand written by Brahmins and are now printed. On this day people bathe in the holy rivers.
Devidhura Temple Festival of Uttarakhand
The "Devidhura Festival" is held in the compound of the Varahi Devi Temple at Devidhura on the day of 'Raksha Bandhan'. The people of Kumaon celebrate Raksha Bandhan by the name "Janopunyu". On this Uttarakhand temple festival day, people change their 'Janeu', a sacred thread. Devidhura Temple is situated at a tri-junction of Almora, Pithoragarh and Nainital districts and the festival is best known for its captivating folk songs and dances as also for its feast.
Jageshwar Festival of Uttarakhand
The "Jageshwar Festival" is held on the 15th day of the month of Baisakh at the Shiva Temple in Jageshwar. During this time, the people take holy dips in the Brahma Kund and worship Lord Shiva. On this day, fairs are also held in many other places.
Punyagiri Temple Festival of Uttarakhand
During the "Punyagiri Festival", people gather at the Punyagiri Temple, situated on the top of a mountain on the right bank of the River Kali, in the Pithoragarh. The temple remains heavily crowded during the Navaratri of Poush and Chaitra.
Fairs at Uttarakhand
There are many more religious fairs held in the state, namely "Chaiti Fair" at Kashipur, "Shivaratri Fair" at Bhikiasen, "Janmashtami Fair" at Kalapani and Gunji, "Hokara Devi Fair" at Birthi, "Lachher Fair" near Nainital and many others. Apart from these, some other fairs that are famous in Uttarakhand are as follows: