This year Makar Sankranti will be celebrated on January 14th-15th. Makar Sankranti celebrates the beginning of the harvest season. In other words, Makar Sankranti celebrates the termination of winter. In Indian mythology, this is the day that the Sun God Surya is praised. In Gujarat, Makar Sankranti is celebrated by flying a colorful kite. By flying a kite, observers hope to send their warmhearted thanks and benevolent wishes to the sun god.
On Makar Sankranti people in Bihar take a dip in a holy river and pray to the sun god. On this day, a special sesame sweet called Tilkut is consumed. Sweets are especially relished on Makar Sankranti because it reminds people how joyous it is to feel the warm weather and start a new harvest season. If you want to try a taste of this sweetness, here is a recipe on how to make it:
In Assam, this festival is called Magh Bihu and lasts for a week. The entire week is full of traditional games like pot breaking and buffalo fighting. Every day is a feast where people burn all the food after they have eaten it. The food is burned in a straw hut, which then turns into a bonfire. Basically this tradition is supposed to symbolize that the old harvest is gone and the new one will come soon.