Weyburn residents took advantage of a special buffet feast on Wednesday at Swaad Indian Restaurant, held in honour of the east Indian festival of Diwali.
“Diwali is a family celebration. It’s the most ancient festival in India,” said Swaad Indian restaurant owner Bikram Sandhu. “The whole family gets together and celebrates it, with friends and everybody in the locality. They’ll go out and celebrate as a community as well, which is why we also celebrated the festival of Diwali, because we consider Weyburn as our home and family and we wanted to celebrate with them.”
The community’s response to the celebration was so great that there was, in fact, a one-hour wait for tables through the lunchtime. Sandhu said he was surprised by the turnout throughout the day.
He said the staff held their own as the droves of people kept filling their restaurant.“We were not expecting to be that busy, but it went really, really well,” he said. “We are really thankful to the people of Weyburn, because they made it successful for us, and we served more than 200 guests.”
“The kitchen was constantly busy,” Sandhu said. “Everybody was in their auto-pilot mode and doing their best.”
Butter chicken, lentil dahl, pakoras, and twelve other dishes were refilled at the buffet countless times from 11:00 a.m. until 9:00 p.m.
Sandhu said Diwali is also known as the festival of lights, with fireworks going all evening long in India. While some guests may have been hoping for fireworks, most were content with the all-you-can-eat buffet.
Although originally a Hindu celebration in worship of Lakshmi, the goddess of prosperity, the event is celebrated across all religions and cultures.
In the northern hemisphere, Diwali always takes place in the fall, in honour of the harvest, and also symbolizes the spiritual victory of light over darkness, good over evil and knowledge over ignorance.
Swaad Indian Restaurant in Weyburn is also known as Prairie Pita. Swaad in Sanskrit means 'tasty'.