The Yemshe Festival in Nagaland is celebrated by the Pochuri tribe. Being one of their most important festivals, the Pochuri Tribe wait anxiously all year round for this time when they come together and celebrate the Yemshe Festival with fun and frolic. It is with grand celebrations and ceremony that the Yemshe Festival is held and all members of the tribe, the young and the old come together with the hope of a good harvest after a year of hard work.
The village spokesman announces the date for the Yemshe festival after which the arrangements and festivities begin. The whole village is cleaned by the village youth, starting from the streets, footpaths to the wells and the fields. The head of the family perform the rituals of the Yemshe Festival whose materials are then fastened to the entrance of each house. It is also the time for fun and merry making as engaged couples exchange gifts and indulge in feasts and wine. This is called the Big Yemshe when people get to know each other and also get engaged. The celebration of the Yemshe with rituals is called the small Yemshe, when a rich family hosts the ritual Purification feast. The feast continues and there are a number of rituals and specific arrangements that are made till the last day of the feast which is the feast cleansing day. All people stay indoors the last day of the feast following which arrangements start for the next harvesting time.
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Yemshe Festival Dates
The time for celebrating the Yemshe Festival is during the month of October, in the first week of the month. The Venue for celebrating the Yemshe Festival is Kohima, the capital of Nagaland. It generally takes place from the last end of the last week of September to the first week of October.