The North American Manipur Association (NAMA) hosted the Cheiraoba 2012 event on 7th April 2012 in Midland, Michigan for families residing in the Mid-West region. The festival was hosted by Sapam family at the community hall of the Mulberry Lanes Apartment complex. NAMA members and families as far as Columbus (Ohio), Detroit, Sterling Heights (Michigan) and Chicago (Illinois) attended the festival. Special mention can be made for a NAMA member who travelled all the way from Binghamton, New York. Molly McFadden of Molly's Bistro, Downtown Midland was the special guest of the event.
More than 12 different Manipuri dishes including Shoibum Iromba, Shingju, Moroi-Bori thongba, Ooti and Paknam were prepared by the ningols gathered for the event. NAMA Founding member Lalit Pukhrambam along with General Secretary, Sapam Shyamananda offered the simple food to our forefathers and sought blessings for prosperity of the Manipuri community in North America and our homeland throughout the year.
All members enjoyed the food that was laid out and were engaged with discussions throughout the luncheon. Molly McFadden in her own words wrote to NAMA saying "We had a wonderful time, truly wonderful and Brian and I look forward to more visits. You all were so welcoming, warm and delightful! The food, as I said, it was delicious." To end the festival, NAMA ningols gifted a 'khudei' each to all the pibas.
Towards the evening, a short NAMA program was arranged. Tamo Lalit gave a background of the Cheiraoba festival and its essence linked with the Manipuri history. A new NAMA logo was launched as a part of the event (video to be released soon). Pens and calendars with the new NAMA logo were distributed. Few NAMA members entertained the gathering by playing the guitar, violin and keyboard. A video on Lai Haroaba and Thougal Jagoi was shown to the guests
At the end of the event, Romi Meitei's award winning short film "Nung Amashung Yerum" was screened (see a Photo Gallery on this film-http://erang.e-pao.org/Behind/2011/Photo_gallery_Noong_Amadi_Yeroom.html
). NAMA team would like to thank Romi Meitei for providing a copy of the movie. This movie will be screened again at the upcoming NAMA Convention 2012 to be held at Boston. The program was anchored by Archana Oinam from Columbus, a Tamilian married to a Manipuri and IT Support was provided by Kunjakishor Maimom, NAMA IT Committee Lead.
Emma Johnson, a freelance journalist who witnessed the entire event has written a report and it has been featured in the local Midland Daily newspaper with the topic 'Midwest Manipuri host Cheiraoba celebration".