Kongu Association of DC held a wonderful Family Reunion in Manassas, Virginia On September 1st and 2nd, 2018
On September 1st and 2nd, 2018 the Kongu Association of DC held a wonderful Family Reunion in Manassas, Virginia. This non-profit group consists of people now living in the US who trace their family roots to the Kongu region of Tamilnadu, India. Brenda and Eric were there to host a large exhibition of visual panels depicting a huge historical epic that features this unique culture area. This story is variously known as the Annanmar Kathai, The Ponnar Shankar Story and the Legend of Ponnivala Nadu. Brenda has studied this amazing tale for over fifty years and now lectures about it around the world. She is committed to giving this story back to the people of the region who first shared it with her and also to sharing this mesmerizing tale with people from other places in India and around the world. She especially hopes that it will be picked up by teachers and used in classroom discussions in many places. She believes this story can be an engaging means of teaching about a wide variety of Indian cultural themes. It can also be used to fruitfully compare history-linked epic tales from many different parts of the globe. Brenda also gave a Keynote Address at the same Manassas conference. In that talk she described the importance of the link she sees between this major story and the Pleiades, a star cluster visible in the heavens that held much ancient symbolic significance. The conference was a big success and many people who were largely unfamiliar with the story were able to learn a little more about it by studying the several visual displays that were set up. A pair of graphic novels, a book set that tells this ancient story using a very modern print genre, was also distributed to all registered conference families at no cost. The Kongu DC membership is grateful to Mr. Manickam Mahalingam of SakthiSugars, Coimbatore, Tamilnadu for this generous and supportive gift to conference attendees.