Typically a fair meant a gathering of people to display or trade produce or other goods, to parade or display animals and often to enjoy dance and music. It is normally the essence of a fair that it is temporary; some last only an afternoon while others may last as long as a few weeks.
The fair is an ancient tradition, and many communities have long had dedicated fairgrounds; others hold them in a variety of public places, including streets and town squares, or even in large private gardens. Fairs are often held in conjunction with a significant event, such as the anniversary of a local historical event, a seasonal event such as harvest time, or with a holiday or a festival or some auspicious occasion such as Makar Sankranti or Nandashtami or Vaisakhi etc.
Uttarakhand is rich in culture and heritage. Fairs (called Mela in Hindi) are clebrated with fervour and zeal. They are an integral part of the social and cultural life of Uttarakhand. Here one can see the cultural diversity of this state. It is at these fairs that the traditional art forms that are on the verge of extinction resurface, so that they can be recognized and supported.
People from all communities participate in these Melas and one can see the camaraderie among the masses, reflected in the collective pleasure experienced by one and all.