Thrissur Pooram is a festival of Hindu temple held in Kerala, India. It is an annual festival. It is held at Vadakkunnathan Temple, Thrissur on Pooram day in every year. Pooram day is the day when the moon rises with the Pooram star (Malayalam Calendar) month of Medam (April-May). Thrissur Pooram is the largest and most famous of all Poorams in India.
Flag Hoisting (Kodiyettam)
Kodiyettam is the first program in Pooram. The celebration of Thrissur Pooram begins seven days before the main Pooram festival. It starts with the ceremonial flag hoisting (Kodiyettam). Various temples participating in this occasion. The ceremonial flag hoisting at Naduvilal and Naikkanal in Thrissur City also. The southern Gopuram opens only on the pooram day.
Display of fireworks (First Round)
Pyrotechnic is one of the major part of this Pooram. That has two rounds. The first round is known as Sample Vedikettu it conducts on the fourth day after the flag hoisting. It presented by Thiruvambady and Paramekkavu Devawsoms. Swaraj Round is the place for this fireworks. The starting time is at 7:15 PM, and this show takes one-hour. The fireworks display usually has innovative patterns and variety display.
Display of Caparisons
More than fifty of elephants display by having Nettipattam(the golden elephant caparison), Chamayam (elephant accoutrements), Aalavattom (ornamental fan made of peacock feathers), Venchamarom (royal fan), sacred bells and decorative umbrellas. They are created by Thiruvambady and Paramekkavu Devawsoms separately. Paramekkavu Devaswom shows this at the Agrasala in Thrissur City and the Place of Thiruvambady Devaswom will exhibits the caparisons is at the Church Mission Society High School in Thrissur City on fourth and fifth day before the Pooram. In 2015 and 2014, it was displayed in Kousthubham Hall at Shornur Road
The Thrissur pooram starts in the early morning at the time of precession of Kanimangalam sasthavu and followed by the precerssion of other those six temples. The event “Madathil varavu” in the pooram festival is the one of the major event. Madathil varavu is panchavadhyam melam – a type Drums harmony. More than 200 artists participating in this harmony, and the instruments include Thimila, Madhalam, Cymbal ,Trumpet and Edakka (Different types of percursion instruments). At 2pm, the famous Ilanjithara melam starts inside the vadakkumnathan temple. Ilanjithara melam is a type of melam consists of drum, trumpets, pipe and cymbal.
The pooram has more than 50 elephants decorated with nettipattam (decorative golden headdress), ornaments and the umbrellas, strikingly crafted form, venchamaram, decorative bells and alavattam are awesome and it enrich the beauty of elephants and Thrissur pooram. At the end of the pooram festival, after the Ilanjithara melam, Paramekkavu and Thiruvambadi groups get in to the temple through the western side gate and come out through the southern gate and themselves made into array, face to face in distant places. In the presence of melam the two groups exchange colorful and crafted umbrellas competitively at the top of the elephants. It called Kudamattom. Kudamattom is an eye catching attraction of Thrissur pooram festival. Later all Poorams conclude at Nilapaduthara near western side gopuram of Vadakkunnathan Temple. The very important feature of the pooram is its secular nature. All others actively participate and make their role in each and every part of the festival. Muslim community crafted the work of pandal. And The churches and their members are offered the materials for the umbrellas for ‘Kudamattom’. It is a good sign of secularism which is disintegrating.
Display of fireworks or Pyrotechnic (Main Round)
Pyrotechnics are an essential part of all festivals in Kerala. But in Thrissur Pooram, the fireworks are distinct in performance, character, magnitude and excellence. Pyrotechnic starts at 3 am and ends after one hour. Both Paramekkavu and Thiruvambady temples compete with each other to provide the best and the most unexpected. People from different places in India come to watch this amazing display of pyrotechnics. There are four major pyrotechnic displays in Thrissur Pooram. The ‘sample firework’ on the day before the Thrissur Pooram, the colorful sparklers that light up the sky called amittu in Malayalam by both sides on the Trichur Pooram evening after the Southward Descent, the most beautiful event that mark the peak of Trichur Pooram celebrations in the early morning time and the final fireworks on the following noon after the Goddesses bid farewell to each other that mark the end of Thrissur Pooram.
The seventh day is the last day of Pooram festival is known as “Pakal pooram” in malayalam which means ‘pooram in day time’. Pakal pooram is for the people of Thrissur, Pooram is also a time for hospitality. So the people of Thrissur give honoring to the guest and the temple representatives. It is called Farewell Ceremony and in malayalam called as “Upacharam Cholli Piriyal”. this is the last event held at Swaraj Round. Paramekkavu Bagavathi Temple and Thiruvambadi Sri Krishna Temple were taken idols from the Swaraj Round to their respective temples make the end of the Thrissur Pooram celebrations. The Thrissur Pooram festival will end with fireworks display known as Pakal Vedikkettu.